Mary Crisp Jameson - copyright material







Sunday, October 26, 2014

The One God

    As I rested in “A Friendly Shade” I looked at the symbol used by our pastor on the front of our church bulletin and thought about the service of, One Church and One Mission, and how we should be united as One.  The symbol was so fitting with the service.
     In fact, I like the symbol so much, I hope he does not mind if I borrow his idea to use it for my blog today.  
     I see the number “1” forming the last leg of N, and being near the center of  the word “One”, as the # 1 emphasis that should be in our lives.

 
1           God should be # 1 in our lives and He should be in the center of it all.  He is the first one we should talk with when we wake up each morning and the last one we should talk with before we go to sleep at night.  He is the First and the Last, and He should be in the center of all we think, do, and say. 

Isaiah 41:4  "Who has done this and carried it through, calling forth the generations from the beginning? I, the Lord—with the first of them and with the last—I am he.”
Isaiah 48:12 “Listen to me, Jacob, Israel, whom I have called: I am he; I am the first and I am the last"
Revelation 22:13 "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End."

ONE  The ONE tells me God is omnipotent – He created all things and holds the power over all creation.  He is ever present.

 Revelation 19:6 “And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns!”


Breaking it down further:


O-  is for the Omega, the Only God.

Revelation 1:8 “ I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”
 
     We are told in the scripture not to look to other Gods.  He is the  Only God who is in control of all things. 

Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.”

Psalm 72:18   Blessed be the Lord God, the God of Israel, Who only does wondrous things!”

N- is for Jesus, who was born a Nazarene. 

Matthew 2:23 And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, “He shall be called a Nazarene.”

     Because of His birth, death, and resurrection, those who believe in Him shall forever have a God who is near at all times.

Hebrews 13:5For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

E- If we believe, we will have an Everlasting Father

Isaiah 63:16 “Doubtless You are our Father, Though Abraham was ignorant of us, And Israel does not acknowledge us. You, O Lord, are our Father; Our Redeemer from Everlasting is your name.  

     There is a promise given to us from the ONE- and that is, an everlasting life.

John 3:16  For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
 

Malachi 2:10  "Have we not all one Father? Has not one God created us? Why do we deal treacherously with one another ..."


 

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Southern Gospel Songs

     As we were finishing up dinner tonight my husband said, “That was some good southern cooking.”  Of course, I thanked him, but couldn’t take all the credit.  My mother raised me to enjoy those kinds of meals, but she also took me to church, and I learned to also enjoy, what I call, good old southern gospel songs. 
     There are so many gospel songs which are seldom sang these days, yet they will always remain my favorites because they are the ones I grew up singing.  They taught me about God's great love.  
     The Old Rugged Cross tells how Jesus died on the cross to save those who believe in Him. I can only imagine the home He has prepared for me, a sinner.
 
“On a hill far away stood an old rugged cross,
The emblem of suff’ring and shame;
And I love that old cross where the dearest and best
For a world of lost sinners was slain.
So I’ll cherish the old rugged cross,
Till my trophies at last I lay down;
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
And exchange it some day for a crown.”

     Then Amazing Grace fills my heart with the sweet sound of peace and comfort.  I know I am saved by His grace simply because I believe.

Amazing grace! How sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch; like me!
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.
‘Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
And grace my fears relieved;
How precious did that grace appear
The hour I first believed!”

     Yes! There Is Power In The Blood.  His blood, which was shed, lifts me up out of the my sin.  It changes me and gives me a victorious life.  Because of the power of His blood, I will, one day, see Him face to face. 

Would you be free from the burden of sin?
There’s pow’r in the blood, pow’r in the blood;
Would you o’er evil a victory win?
There’s wonderful pow’r in the blood.
There is pow’r, pow’r, wonder-working pow’r
In the blood of the Lamb’
In the precious blood of the Lamb.”
 
    What A Friend We Have In Jesus tells me that Jesus is a friend who will be with me through grief, trials, and temptations.  He will be there when I am weak and heavy-laden.  He is a friend like no other!

“What a friend we have in Jesus,
All our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer!
Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
Oh, what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer!
….Can we find a friend so faithful,
Who will all our sorrow share?

     One of my all time favorites is In The Garden.  There is no doubt in my mind that Jesus walks beside me every day. 

I come to the garden alone,
While the dew is still on the roses,
And the voice I hear falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses.
And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.”

     There are so many good, old time gospel songs.  I could go on and on about these songs which  taught me about God, but space does not permit; however, I have to add another song which I remember singing in G.A.’s as well as church services.  We’ve A Story To Tell To the Nations taught me that there is something we need to do for Jesus.  We are commissioned to tell others about Jesus and His death on the cross, “for whosoever believeth in Him shall be saved.”   

“We’ve a story to tell to the nations
That shall turn their hearts to the right,
A story of truth and mercy,
A story of peace and light.
For the darkness shall turn to dawning,
And the dawning to noonday bright,
And Christ’s great kingdom shall come on earth,
The kingdom of love and light.”

     Finally, but not least, we should always Praise Him, Praise Him

"Praise Him! Praise Him! Tell of His excellent greatness;
Praise Him! Praise Him! Ever in joyful song!"


     Why praise Him?  Because Love Lifted Me!

"Love lifted me!
Love lifted me!
When nothing else could help,
Love lifted me!"





   

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Power Of The Universe

      There is nothing that can bestow more peace than knowing God holds the power over all creation and events in our lives.  Just knowing I can place my loved-ones in God's hands and accepting His will for them provides a peace beyond understanding because I know God is all-powerful. 
 
          Power Of The Universe

Echoes cross the void and empty space;
There’s not a soul in this wondrous place.
Then, listen! The sound rings out with a mighty shout-
The earth rolls out.
Beauty and splendor are His making.
Seas appear, mountains erupt, the earth is shaking. 

There is power, wonder-working power;
Feel it! Look and watch every hour.
There is power through the universe-
Hear it, see it blossom and disburse. 

The sun, the moon, the stars-
The universe from earth to Mars;
Animals both large and small
Awaken to His call. 
See it, touch it, know the power
Throughout the waking hour.

The lightning flashes,
The thunder clashes-
Its bright!
Its light!
He holds the power,
In the stormy hour.
The wind whirls; it slashes;
The rain pounds and splashes;
Yet, He’s the master of the storm
Since this earth was born.

Watch for the Power-
Feel His presence in the refreshing shower.
It’s all around,
From the heavens down to the ground. 
Hear the power of His thunder;
Look at all the surrounding wonder.

There is power, wonder-working power;
It's among us every hour.
See it, touch it, feel it!
Let it blossom and flow. Let it fit. 
There is power in the peace-
The birds that twitter when the winds begin to cease.   

His blood flows evermore,
From His hands, His feet; Listen to the roar. 
Feel it! Savor it! The earth quakes.
See, the power as some come awake.
The solid rocks burst and split.
What power the blood does emit. 

See it, touch it, feel it! Accept the wonder of the Power-
Ruler over every hour.
Praise Him - Father, Son and Holy Ghost.
Bow to the Power of the Heavenly Host!
                                      Mary Crisp Jameson

Psalms 145:11-12  "Thy shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom, and talk of thy power; To make known to the sons of men his mighty acts, and the glorious majesty of his kingdom." 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Fairytale Story

     Most all of us enjoyed fairytale stories growing up.  Many of the stories started with “Once upon a time,”  and ended with “And they lived happily ever after.”    These stories led a lot of us to believe that life would end with happiness and success.  Along the way, some have been disappointed.   
     As we grew into adults and tackled the world outside our fairytale stories we learned there was more to the in-between parts; that is, how the prince lived while he was a toad and how long Cinderella had to  scrub floors in hand-me-down rags.  Many of us wonder if we will ever make it from rags to riches.  We are always looking for that silver lining thinking that money will make us happy. 
     Then there are those who live a lowly life, but find the happy ending simply by accepting the fact that God made us beautiful in whatever situation we are living.  Focus is on the greater things of life, which is their spiritual walk.  They have learned to enjoy who they are in Christ.  Their hearts are joyful because they have created, through God, their own happy ending.  They are not standing around complaining, waiting to be kissed by prince charming. 
     I believe God opens the windows of heaven and pours out stardust every day.  It is up to us to catch it and enjoy life.  When I read the last section of Malachi 3:10, I could envision the windows of heaven opening and all that stardust, in the way  of blessings, pouring down upon my head.   I just have to do my part to receive it.  I need to give Him my  praise, my time,  my witness for Him in whatever ability He has bestowed upon me, and just return to Him a small portion of what He does for me every day in order to be able enrich my fairytale story and make it become a reality.  
     Actually my story is no fairy tale.  It goes like this:   "Once upon a time" there was me, without God in my heart.  Then I believed.  Jesus came into my life and I  "live happily ever after."
     Malachi 3:10,  “ Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.”
     John 3:16, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 

 

Thursday, October 2, 2014

The Fig Leaf

     “A Friendly Shade” is covered in various types of trees, including a fig bush.  As much as I enjoy “A Friendly Shade” it is a far, far cry from the Garden of Eden. Yet, when I observed the fig leaf and thought about the sin Adam and Eve tried to cover, I looked at my own heart and decided that I needed to find a much bigger leaf. I didn’t have far to travel to find the largest one in “A Friendly Shade.” As you can see, there is no comparison. My leaf of choice has to be the sycamore.

     Even at that, the large sycamore leaf cannot do a better job than the fig leaf did for Adam and Eve. God can see through them both no matter how much I try to hide. He knows my every thought and my heart.

1 Samuel 16:7 “…Man does not see what the lord sees, for man sees what is visible, but the Lord sees the heart.

      Man may not always see or know what is in our hearts, but our actions often tell the story. The words that we say may not always protray our works or actions.  Man has to “listen” to the action of people rather than their words in order to determine what is being hidden in the heart. We may think we are hiding our true feelings or intents but, at some point, they will surface.
     Praise God He has a forgiving spirit! Unlike most men.      

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Peacemakers

     It is easy to have peace when we are along in a quiet and peaceful place, like "A Friendly Shade", but how can we manage to surround ourselves with a feeling of peace when we are around people who seem to want to disturb that type of environment?   We are told in Romans 14:19 to “Follow after the things which make for peace” 
     I tried to find scriptures that give us words of advise on how to be peacemakers and came up with the following acronym for peacemakers. 

P - Pray for others …Matthew 5:44b “…pray for those who persecute you”

E- Endure -………...1 Corinthians 4:12b “… when we are persecuted, we endure    it.”

A-Avenge not  .........Romans 12:19a “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves…”

C –Constant in Pray..Romans 12:12b “continuing instant in prayer.”

E- Exercise restraint.1 Corinthians 8:9 “Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block to the weak.”

M-Merciful ............. Luke 6:36  “Be merciful just as your Father is merciful.”

A –Answer softly.... Proverbs 15:1 "a gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

K –Kindness............Romans 12: 10a “Be kindly affectioned one to another…”

E-Extend to those in need..Proverbs 31:20 “She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy.

R –Recompense not..Romans 12:17a “Recompense to no man evil for evil…”

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Why Pray?

     It’s almost Fall!  The tell tale signs surround “A Friendly Shade.”  The leaves are beginning to fall; some even have a hint of changing colors.   Even though I don’t always enjoy the weather in any given season, I do love the changing of the seasons.  I am so glad that God is in control.  How do I know this?  He tells us in Isaiah 40:7  The grass withers and the flowers fall, because the breath of the Lord blows on them…”
     My next question is  the same as the author from In Touch, “If God is in control of all things why does He ask us to pray?"  We already knows that God knows all, controls all, can do all, and give all?
     Since I am not a Bible scholar, I went back and reviewed my weekly IN Touch devotional for an answer and found in the September, 2014 publication a few things the author wrote, as follows:
     "God desires to involve His children in the work He is doing.  Prayer helps us maintain a sense of dependence upon our Father and leads to a deepening intimacy with Him. God desires to bring us into agreement with His will.  The more our plans line up with His, the more He is able to accomplish in and through our life.”
     I also found in Matthew 26:41 that Jesus says, “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.  The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”   
     On further reflection, even Jesus prayed, and He knew the Father’s will.  He prayed in a solitary place.  Mark 1:35 tells us, “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.”  Luke 5:16 says, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”  Then in John 17:1 we are told he asked, “After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you.”   
     Jesus actually gave us so much insight into what and how we should pray.  He even gave us examples of His own prayer life.    He prayed when even- “He knew!”