When asked, “Who do you want to meet in heaven?” most people pick the famous people of the Bible for their first interview like, Moses, Mary, Daniel and David. But I think I will skip the long lines of Isaiah, Elijah, and Esther and go right for someone else. The first thing I will ask him is, “What’s your name?” since the Bible doesn’t tell us. The person I would pick is The Demon Possessed Man from Mark 5.
Last Friday my husband preached to our youth group from Mark 5 and I was struck with this thought, “What was it like experiencing a piece of Hell? And what was it like to have Jesus transform you into His Kingdom of light?” After I ask those two simple questions I want to sit down and listen to every word he says. I want to hear his amazement of what Christ did for him. I want to hear his story of salvation that made it possible for him to be in Heaven to worship Christ forever. After all, telling his story of salvation was what he did for years here on earth. Mark 5:20 “And he went away and began to proclaim in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him, and everyone marveled.” I am certain that in Heaven the amazement and the marvel from his story will be that much greater.
I want to share in the wonder of his salvation. I am looking forward to the day I get to hear this story in the first person from the man who was possessed by demons and now sings beside angels. I want to hear of his salvation and stand in awe, with him, of Jesus lover of the lost.
But I am thankful now for this story. I am thankful that Christ has put it in His word to show us His mercy. Mark 5:19 “. . . [Jesus] said to him, ‘Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.’” I can stand in awe now, not only of God’s mercy on a man possessed by demons, but the mercy he has shown me. I may not be possessed by demons, but I was certainly a part of the Kingdom of Darkness and I am thankful to be transformed into the Kingdom of Light through my Savior Jesus Christ. This story is a reminder that we were all so close to Hell and were rescued. May I marvel at that truth every day on earth and rejoice in it for eternity in Heaven.
In the past I posted a link to My Blessed Life and 16 Homemade Valentines Ideas. I was contacted and asked if I had any Valentine’s inspired ideas for a couple’s party. So for you, Jennifer, and anyone else who might want some ideas.
1. Hearts – Make individual heart shaped pizzas (each couple can custom make their own), heart shaped veggies, and of course, heart shaped desserts like decorated cookies, chocolates, and even maybe some hot chocolate with a heart shaped dollop of whipped cream as the topping.
2. Candlelight – Even though there are multiple couples coming to dinner does not mean you can’t enjoy a romantic candlelight dinner. Set your lighting and decorate your table with some beautiful candles. Have a Valentine ready to send home with each couple describing why you appreciate them as friends. You can even include a rose with each note.
3. Kids- Sometimes it is hard to find babysitting. Why not have a wonderful Kids Valentine’s Party. Make those special crafts as families complete with heart shaped grilled cheese, and a cupcake decorating station. If you don’t bring the kids or don’t have kids you can still have fun being a kid again.
4. Memories – Another great idea is to have your guests bring their wedding albums to the party. You can spend time sharing memories. If the couples you are inviting are not married you can always have a time sharing first dates or best date nights, or even share worst date nights.
I hope some of these ideas have inspired you. Please feel free to share some ideas that you have used in the past.
“The ultimate test of my understanding of the scriptural teaching is the amount of time I spend in prayer. As theology is ultimately the knowledge of God, the more theology I know, the more it should drive me to seek to know God. Not to know “about” Him but to know Him! The whole object of salvation is to bring me to knowledge of God… If all my knowledge does not lead me to prayer there is something wrong somewhere.” Martyn Lloyd-Jones
I am thankful to my husband Derick for posting this quote last week on his facebook page. It had more meaning to me this past Sunday as I listened to a sermon on the Trinity. The sermon was a simple explanation that we have one God who exists in three separate persons.
As I sat listening I was moved by the fact that such a basic knowledge of God moves my heart to rejoice and worship Him. I am thankful to the Holy Spirit for His work in my heart that helps to take a truth of God to move me closer in my relationship to God.
I then started questioning why I do not have more moments like that. I realized I usually step away from thinking on these wonderful truths like the Trinity. Then I realized that it is because these truths remind me how finite and small I am. But it is when I realize I am small that I see God in all His true majesty and it is then I find joy because I see God.
Think on the truths of God today. Let it bring you closer to Him and experience true joy today.
So, last week, while my little ones were napping I was able to do some baking. It is very rare these days that both kids nap at the same time so I took advantage and took some pictures of my favorite cookies, as I made them, to share with all of you. However, like I said both girls napping together for a long period of time hardly ever happens, so it has taken me a week to get back on to my blog to actually post my pictures. So I hope you get a chance this weekend to try this recipe out for yourself. Enjoy!
Cookie dough Recipe:
I use my favorite peanut butter cookie recipe
1 ¾ cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ cup shortening/butter
½ cup peanut butter
½ cup sugar
½ cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Sift together flour, baking soda, and salt. Then cream together shortening and peanut butter. Add both sugars, egg and vanilla. Beat well. Blend in dry ingredients. Mix well.
Once the dough is mixed take mini candy bars, I used Snickers, and press into a lump of dough. I roll into a ball to completely cover the candy bar with the cookie dough.
Bake in the oven at 375 for about 11 to 15 minutes or until they are firm. I like them slightly raw. I think they stay chewy longer.
In contrast with the anniversary of Roe V Wade which celebrates death, below is a video celebrating life. A family who saw the “bigger picture”. They grew in their walk with the Lord and in joy as they enjoyed the time they had with a baby they knew would never live outside the womb.
This week I went to see “The Hobbit”. I can honestly say the only disappointment of the movie is that I have to be patient for two more movies to come out before I get to finish the story.
One line from the movie has stuck with me throughout the week.
“Saruman believes it is only great power that can hold evil in check, but that is not what I have found. I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love.” Gandalf
I love this quote. I was reading in my devotions today in 2 Kings 5 and it reminded me again of this quote. It is the story of Naaman coming to Elisha to be healed of Leprosy. When Naaman gets there he expects to see Elisha come out, but instead Elisha sends his servant to speak to Naaman and tells him to go dip seven times in the Jordan. Naaman gets angry and turns away stating, “Behold, I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call upon the name of the Lord his God, and wave his hands over the place and cure the leper.” He wanted a big act of power, a miracle put on display where he would be the center focus.
Aren’t we the same. Praying and looking for big miracles, big shows of power. The idea where we speak and hundreds bow before the Lord, we sacrifice of ourselves and everyone looks at us in awe of what we can accomplish. But God doesn’t work that way does He. God wants to be put on display for His work. He wants our little acts of obedience. He wants us to go and wash ourselves in an insignificant place. He wants us to go into our closets in secret and spend time in private with the Lord doing our daily task of praying and reading God’s Word with no one watching. No one knowing. He wants our obedience when it doesn’t make sense. When it doesn’t seem significant. He wants our obedience to do the things that won’t get any credit. He wants our obedience so that sin will diminish. Not disappear in one wave of our hand as we recite lines and magic words, but he wants our sin to be washed away as we soak and dip our minds into the Word of God.
So I challenge myself and you who are reading, be obedient to the work God has called you to. There is no treasure to be found in big powerful productions of service, but in the plodding along of the Christian life. Obey God and the tasks He has called you to.