Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Snow on Haleakala

Yesterday we got a most unusual site outside our back window. Haleakala Crater (at 13,000 feet elevation) got snow on the peaks. A friend of mine who has a closer view from her backyard sent this picture. Isn't it amazing? Snow in Hawaii!

We have no heaters in Hawaii---no thermostats to turn up, and the temperatures have gotten as low as 55 at night and no warmer than 65 during the day for the past few days. We've been huddling with blankets, sweat shirts and pants, and warm socks trying to keep the cold from permeating our bones! Yesterday all across the islands we had a mixture of rain, thunderstorms, hail (on the Big Island) and snow. For those planning a vacation to Hawaii, you may want to stick a warm jacket in your suitcase (and maybe an umbrella as well).

Hope you are staying warm wherever you are!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

A Stubborn Heart

Most of you as children have wrestled with your dad or siblings when suddenly you get in a position where you can't move because they have you pinned to the ground, or your arm is held in the back til it hurts, and the one who has you pinned says, "Just say uncle" meaning he'll let you go if you admit your defeat! If you don't give in, you feel greater and greater pressure to be let loose from the pain, so finally you cave in and say "UNCLE!"

I've been reading Exodus where the Israelites were in bondage to Pharoah and finally wanted to leave Egypt and the bondage that was holding them to hard labor at Pharoah's command for many years. God sent Moses and Aaron to go to Pharoah on behalf of the Israelites and ask for their release to leave the country and the slavery. Pharoah had a very stubborn heart and would not let God's people go. So God had to put some pressure on Pharoah in the form of many plagues. The plagues became more and more destructive--until finally Pharoah cried "Uncle" and told the Israelites----just go already! (My translation).

Can we relate to Pharoah's stubborn heart in any way? Is there something in our lives that God is wanting to root out and we just tenaciously want to hang on to it and won't surrender it to God? How about fear of the future? What about a habit that seems to have its stranglehold on you? What about giving up something precious that has held you back from complete surrender to God and His will for you?

Will God have to put pressure on you until you say "Uncle?" Yes, Lord, I'll do what you want me to do. Yes, Lord, I'll trust you in that area of my life that has been holding me back. Yes, Lord, I give all to serve you. How much better for you to humble yourselves BEFORE He has to put the pressure on you to do what He wants you to do. He wants obedience more than sacrifice. The conviction of the Holy Spirit guides you to make a choice to obey. Sometimes not making the choice to obey brings unwanted circumstances, just as Pharoah experienced with his stubborn heart.

For those without Christ I wonder how many times God will have to come to you in order for you to open your heart to His love and mercy. He comes knocking---and He will continue to knock persistently---until you either choose never to open the door and let Him into your heart, or you humbly say,--please come into my heart and save me for eternity. He's a gentleman---He waits for you and will never force Himself in your heart's door until you invite Him, but He does love you enough to be the "hound of heaven" in your life and will do what it takes to bend your knees to Him.

Don't allow a stubborn heart keep from you God's best for you!

Sunday, January 27, 2008


Last night friends from our Bible study group gave my husband a surprise birthday dinner. Dick was truly surprised and we all had such an enjoyable evening together with good conversation and laughter. It is such a blessing to have wonderful friends and family to share the celebrations of your life.

Fellowship is important to God. We were created by God to bring Him pleasure, to fellowship with Him through prayer, our conversations with Him. The body of Christ, the church, is meant to fellowship with one another and bear each others'
burdens as well as to share in the joys of each other's accomplishments. God gave us a spiritual gift that is meant to benefit the body of Christ. No one else has your gift quite like you! Remember to use it for the Lord and the building up of His church. "Do not forsake the assembling of yourselves together."

Have a special day in the Lord today as you attend your place of worship today!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Senior Citizenship

Today my husband turns 65---that magical age when you officially become a "senior citizen" (does that mean prior to 65, you are a "junior" citizen?) What exactly does "senior" mean? In high school, being a "senior" means the last year of classes before graduation. In life, being a senior is having reached your peak and heading on the downhill side of life as we know it here on earth. In young adults' eyes, you are an "elder." In children's eyes, you are old! In the government's eyes, you are eligible for social security. At restaurants, you are granted a discount for the food you eat. Gray hair and achy muscles and slowness of driving and walking qualifies you as a senior in most people's eyes, as well. You can usually sleep in the afternoon as long as you want and no one objects. You can fall asleep in church and no one notices.

Getting older is inevitable. We cannot escape advancing years. The wrinkles will arrive sooner or later! How good it is to be reminded in God's word that outwardly we are fading away, but our inward man is renewed day by day (II Cor. 4:16) Old age is proof that we have stood the test of time and endured the years that God has allowed us on this earth. It is good for us to be reminded of our youth and the lessons we learned along life's pathway. We should be wiser, more mellow, have a sweeter spirit, and face our tomorrows with hope and confidence and a deeper joy.

Aging is a blessing from God. Each day is another day to praise Him and love others. So happy birthday, Dick! Welcome to the wonderful world of senior citizenship and may God bless your remaining years as you serve Him!

I love you!

Sunday, January 20, 2008


There's an old hymn that I love entitled "Others." I would pray that it might be my life's theme song and that I might fulfill the purpose that it intends to bring to all who sing it.


Lord, let me live from day to day
In such a self-forgetful way
That even when I kneel to pray
My prayer shall be for Others.

Help me in all the work I do
To ever be sincere and true
And know that all I'd do for you
Must needs be done for Others.

Let self be crucified and slain
And buried deep; and all in vain
May efforts be to rise again
Unless to live for Others.

And when my work on earth is done
And my new work in heaven's begun
May I forget the crown I've won
While thinking still of Others.

Others, Lord, yes, others,
Let this my motto be
Help me to live for others
That I may live like Thee.

We all have personal needs to attend to, both physically and spiritually, but we must be careful never to get so wrapped up in ourselves that we fail to give proper consideration to the people that God has in our sphere of influence. Others's needs was certainly Christ's first priority. He often set aside his need for rest and sustenance so that He could meet the needs of the people around Him. He is our example!

Isn't there someone that you know that needs a little help from a friend?

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


Sometimes we go through the week (or sometimes much longer) very discouraged by life that has not gone as we had planned or hoped. We hear bad news about friends going through critical health issues, we look at our checkbooks and wonder how to make it to the end of the month, our car breaks down on the way to work, a relationship has been broken by a misunderstanding, we hear of the impending divorce of dear friends. There are many things that crop up suddenly in our lives that cause us to become unsteady, both in our emotional stability, and also our spiritual walk with the Lord. As Christians, how do we react to the negative issues of life that come into our sphere of family and friends? Do we rant at God for allowing it to happen? Do we draw away from others because we can't face the issue head on? Our first response should be to go to God with a humble spirit asking for His help, but the beautiful part of our Christian family is that we can go to each other for help as well. We should not be ashamed when we are down to call on someone to help us get back up! Or turning it around, we should always be quick to run to the aid of a Christian brother or sister in need.

In Thessalonians 5:11, we are told by Paul to "encourage one another and build each other up." Romans 15:2 says, "Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up." We all have occasion where we begin to droop, we falter in our faith, we lose strength to handle the negative circumstances in our life. That's why it is so vital that Christians encourage one another. When one falters, we are to come alongside and hold them up until they can regain their strength in the Lord. We can do that in so many various ways. We can pray, we can physically meet a need they may have, we can simply be there for a shoulder to cry on, we can point them to Christ, the Savior who promises to be their Helper.

Paul encouraged us to maintain the spirit of unity with one another so that God may be glorified. We are there for one another, just as Christ is always there for us. We are to value one another and realize that each and every person is valuable to God. We have means to help others through Christ in some manner. Let's maintain a heart that is willing to reach out to others that are hurting, or that simply may mean a cheerful smile, a tender pat on the shoulder, a kind word said in love.
Do you know someone that is struggling? Find a way to reach out to them. God will show you what needs to be said and done. You just need to take that first step.

Be an encourager!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

When God's Answer is Silence

Each of us have gone through periods in our lives when we pray and seemingly, God does not answer! We wait....and wait....and wait....and yet God remains silent. I've been reading an excellent book by Ray Stedman entitled "Let God Be God."
The book states that sometimes God's silence is for a very good reason. When we go through a trial and we call out to God for relief from the pain and misery of the circumstance, we want instant relief. And God being God, we think He should be able to meet our demands instantly. All that is in our minds is to stop the pain. We aren't willing to be patient enough to consider the purpose and the will of God for which the pain has been brought into our lives. At our very best, we are selfish creatures and we want what we want when we want it. We call upon God as a quick fix to get us out of the pain. We cry for relief but the help does not come. How do you view God when He is silent to your prayers? Do you condemn Him and say He doesn't care? Do you question if He even exists? Do you think that you aren't saved and He is punishing you by not answering you right away---that He has a cruel streak in Him that loves watching you suffer?

In our pain, we often call God unjust, unloving, not compassionate toward us. And yet, it's the very pain that God uses to teach us a great lesson about His character and tests our faith and trust in Him. Often suffering is used to grow us up, to bring us to a place of maturity, understanding and personal knowledge of God that we could not learn any other way. A favorite quote of our pastor at church is that God is not so concerned about our comfort as He is our character. He wants us to become more conformed to the image of Christ in our daily walk with Him. Our trials try our faith and prove it genuine or false. A quote from Ray Stedman's book is this: "Our Lord is not in the business of reforming people. He's in the business of renewing people. He doesn't want to make us better; He wants to make us new. God desires our repentence and relationship, not reform. What God demands of us is unconditional surrender, completely giving up the right to run our own lives."

God wants "to add to our faith, goodness, and to goodness, knowledge, and to knowledge, self-control, and to self-control, perserverance, and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love." (II Peter 1:5-7) In other words, God wants us to become more and more like His Son, Jesus Christ. God's silence is giving us time to quit striving on our own to solve our problems, but allowing us time to get to the point where we allow God to speak to us and teach us His character and to get us to the point where we can truly say in our hearts, "Not my will, Lord, but thine be done."

When we arrive at that point of surrender in our lives, we then can become comforters to others who might be going through similar suffering that God has brought us through. We can testify that God is faithful in times of trial and will bring them through the trials with greater capacity to love and understand the pain of others. ,

God does not comfort us to make us comfortable, but to make us comforters!

Monday, January 14, 2008

God's Still Small Voice

Have you ever considered the noise level around you every single day? How long has it been since you've had time to experience silence? When I was young, my most serene moments were long walks in the woods by myself enjoying the environment away from cars honking, train whistles, television, children playing and interruptions by the telephone. The woods had a special "noise" that was soothing to my soul---the crunch of leaves under my feet, the cry of a distant bird in the trees, the chatter of a squirrel, or the scurrying of a chipmunk across a log.

The noise of the world today demands our attention. Parents giving orders to their children as they are getting ready for school, bosses telling us what is expected for the day, cellphones ringing all around every day even while trying to have lunch and relax, cars zooming by, sirens rushing to emergencies. Even at night when it should be a relaxing time, homework demands are being heard, television is blaring, telephones ringing. There just seems to be such little time for silence.

In this world of noise, sometimes it is difficult to hear God's still small voice in the midst of the clamor. God very seldom yells or screams His will to us, or gives us direction through the noise around us. He whispers to us as we quietly listen for His voice. He does that through reading His word, meditating alone by ourselves, or as we allow our thoughts to focus on Him and shut out the noises of the world around us.

How does God lead you in your daily walk with Him? Do you hear his direction loud and clear and walk firmly on His path confident that you are going in the right direction that leads you to obedience? Or do you come to a place of decision or a crossroads and feel His gentle nudging you in one direction or another when decisions have to be made? You can hear his still small voice inwardly saying "This is the way, walk ye in it." or you hear Him say, "No, my child, that path is not for you."

So often as Christians, the world shouts at us---the world makes demands of us that are sometimes so compelling that we cave in to the shouts and follow the path of the loudest voice. People follow the voice of their peers, or the sudden impulses of desire, because the loudness and/or the compassion demands satisfaction immediately. We need to train ourselves to get to our silent place and listen for His direction. As we face a new year, let us commit ourselves to finding that quiet time with God every day that will help us to more assuredly hear His voice and be able to follow Him in obedience.

God's Word is His voice speaking to us! Let us listen quietly!

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Donkey in the Well

I just read this little story and thought what a good example of perseverance and not giving up! Sometimes we feel buried by our problems, but there's always a way out!

One day a farmer's donkey fell down into a well. The animal
cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out
what to do.

Finally he decided the animal was old and the well needed to
be covered up anyway, so it just wasn't worth it to retrieve
the donkey.

He invited all his neighbors to come over and help him. They
each grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the

At first, the donkey realized what was happening and cried
horribly. Then, to everyone's amazement, he quieted down. A
few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the
well and was astonished at what he saw.

With every shovel full of dirt that hit his back, the donkey
was doing something amazing. He would shake it off and take
a step up. As the farmer's neighbors continued to shovel
dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a
step up. Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey
stepped up over the edge of the well and trotted off!

Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt.

The trick to getting out of the well is to shake it off and
take a step up. Each of our troubles is a stepping stone.

We can get out of the deepest wells by not stopping, never
giving up! Shake the dirt off and take a step up! Remember
the five simple rules to be happy:

1. Free your heart from hatred.
2. Free your mind from worries.
3. Live simply.
4. Give more.
5. Expect less.

Remember the donkey in the well example whenever you feel overwhelmed!

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Is Anything Too Hard for Me?

In my devotional reading this morning in Genesis, I read how God performed a great miracle for Abraham and Sarah by implanting life in the very dead womb of Sarah at 99 years of age. Sarah laughed at the absurdity of giving birth at her age when told by the Lord that she would bear a child. God's reply to her was "Is anything too hard for Me?" Sarah did bear a child whom she named Isaac, which means "laughter." Isaac became the son that allowed Abraham to be "the father of many nations."

In I Samuel, we read where Hannah also suffered through many long years of barrenness, a closed womb, wanting a child so desperately that she went to the temple faithfully every year and prayed for him. She vowed that if God would honor her request that the child would be dedicated to serve the Lord all the days of his life. God heard her prayer, honored her request, opened her womb and she conceived and later gave birth to Samuel. Samuel's life was dedicated to do priestly work all the days of his life.

Mary, the mother of Jesus, was a very young girl, estimated to be around 13 years of age, when the Lord told her that her virgin womb would conceive the Christ Child having the seed implanted by the Holy Spirit, an act unheard ever over eons of time. She bore a child, named him Jesus, and he became the Saviour of the World.

Truly these miracles should cause us to exclaim "is anything too hard for the Lord?" Are you struggling with what seems to be an impossible situation---no hope of seeing a good result? Are you at the end of your rope dangling there and hanging on by sheer determination? Are you crying out to God not knowing what to do next or what lies around the corner for you?
I challenge you today to remember that NOTHING is impossible with God. He has performed miracles far greater than the testing you are going through at this moment. Trust Him. Have faith in His power and His love for you. He wants to prove Himself faithful to you and you need to acknowledge that He is the answer to your need at this time. God's arm is not too short to reach out and touch you today. The results of your faith might be truly amazing to you, as was Sarah's, Hannah's and Mary's as they placed their circumstances in the Lord's hands.

Nothing is too hard for the Lord!

Monday, January 07, 2008

A Renewed Commitment

Today is the first Monday of the new year. Today I again renewed my commitment to lose weight. My niece and I are attending WeightWatchers that meet every Monday evening. We will be returning to the meetings after a three-week break over the holidays. When you know you haven't done well, it's a dread to face those scales! And yet in facing them, it helps to encourage you to get back on track, to keep going, and not to give up. Others who face the same obstacles are there to get in the boat with you and give you tips and encouraging words to stay on the path of losing. They help you not to look at the failures of the past, but look forward to the pounds to be lost in the future.

Isn't that what we are called to do as Christians? We are all commissioned by God for the same purpose--to go and tell others about Jesus, to live a life in conformity to Christ, to have the mind of Christ and to follow Him in the direction He leads. Sometimes we get discouraged because we see no visible results, and yet we have those Christian brothers and sisters that come alongside us to let us know that the results are in God's hands, and we are to simply obey. They pick us up in spirit, when we get discouraged. They help us to renew our commitment and keep running the race that is before us, forgetting those failures from the past and moving on toward the high calling of Christ. They rejoice with us when God answers prayer on our behalf. The unity of the body of Christ is a sign to the world that Christ is alive and real.

If you are not connected to a local church and are not experiencing the love of Christ through other Christian brothers and sisters, ask God to lead you to the body that is right for you and your family. We need each other. There is a church that needs you and the spiritual gift that God has given you to share! You need the church that can share with you the gifts that strengthen you and your faith. Find that bond of Christian love that will support you and encourage you in your Christian walk! Most of all, renew your commitment to Christ and keep on serving Him throughout this new year that is before us. WeightWatchers keeps me on a path of losing-----the local church keeps us on the path of winning!

There is victory when we have each other!

Sunday, January 06, 2008

What Does Wisdom Look Like?

Wisdom is a quality hard to put our mind around. We often get it confused with having knowledge. Knowledge certainly plays a part in wisdom, because without the knowledge of God in our hearts, we cannot possibly have wisdom. Wisdom is being able to apply what God has taught us and implanted within us to other people in our sphere of influence. Wisdom held within benefits no one.

So do others see you as wise? What does wisdom look like to you? When you face conflict of any kind, whether with a co-worker, your family, or your neighbors, does wisdom prevail in your responses to them? We know that wisdom comes from above, not from below. As Christians, we should respond differently to conflicts and upsetting circumstances because of the Spirit of Christ within us.

The Book of James tells us that wisdom is first pure. We are to respond to others wih the pure intent and heart of God, rather than our own selfish demands of greed, envy and selfish ambition. When we meet conflict head on, do we show the presence of Christ within us?

Wisdom is then peaceable. We long for peace rather than conflict. Even when circumstances can never be the same again, wisdom from above helps us to see that the foolishness of a bitter or revengeful spirit is wrong. Wisdom allows us to value peace over conflict.

Wisdom displays gentleness. A listening ear and a gentle voice can lower the temperature of a difficult moment. "A gentle answer turns away wrath."

Wisdom allows us a willingness to yield. One person willing to give up the urge to get even or be unforgiving can make all the difference in a difficult situation. Returning good for evil is not a weakness, but strength to do what is right in the eyes of God. When we focus on God, it allows us to give up the need to return harm to those who have hurt us, and be forgiving.

After all, the All-Wise One, Jesus, gave up his right to get even with those that crucified him on a cruel cross. Instead, he said, "Forgive them, Lord, for they know not what they do." He then gave us His all so that we might have it all with Him for eternity.

When we display wisdom that comes from God, others will see the difference in our responses to others. They will be amazed as it allows Jesus to be seen and glorified in us. They will ponder in their own hearts that the difference is inviting to their own hearts and they will desire that same wisdom. Wisdom will not and cannot come from the knowledge that they have gained in the world from books or personal experience. Wisdom that makes a difference can only come from knowing God personally!

May the wisdom that "comes for above" implant within us peace!

Friday, January 04, 2008

Hidden Treasure

For several years now, my son has had the hobby of "geocaching." "Geo" means earth, and "cache" means treasure. If you are not familiar with the term, you locate by GPS treasure boxes (or caches) that have been hidden by someone. The caches are hidden all over the world, are given coordinates as to their location, and rated as to their difficulty. They are listed on a website with the coordinates and you have the wonderful privilege of finding them. They are rated as "easy" to find to "difficult." Once you locate the cache, you choose a "treasure" that has been left inside the cache, and replace it with something that you have brought, and write in a log that is left within the cache that you have been there. You also go to the website and record your visit as well. There are "travelers" that are placed within the cache by the original owner, and they follow the trail of the traveler. Some travelers have gone all over the world. Geocaching is a wonderful way for my son and his two sons to discover new areas, hike new trails, and have fun together.

God's Word has many treasures hidden for His people to find and apply to their lives in order to gain wisdom and understanding of His will and His ways. He encourages us to dig deep and discover those treasures. Sometimes it may take an easy path or sometimes His wisdom comes through difficult circumstances. The Book of Proverbs encourages us to "look for it (wisdom) as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, THEN you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God." God's wisdom implanted within our hearts brings to us great benefits. It's a shield to us to guard us and protect us. It gives us discretion to live uprightly and to live blamelessly in a world that continually wants to pull us away from God. It prolongs our life and brings prosperity to us. It brings health to our bodies and nourishment to our bones. It brings us honor and the path of peace, sound judgment, and is like an ornament to grace our neck.

Let's strive to dig deep for God's hidden treasure of wisdom. He will be faithful to credit it to our account.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Christmas is Past, the Light of It Remains

Yesterday all the Christmas decorations were taken down and put in boxes ready to be stored in the attic for another year.
The light of the Christmas tree no longer can be turned on early in the morning before daylight to brighten my spirits as I read God's Word and wait for the household to awaken. The lights outside on the eaves of the rooftop no longer light up the night to brighten the mood of those passing by in their cars, the candles are no longer out to bring a spicy Christmas fragrance to the house, and the pine wreath is gone no longer bringing its scent throughout the house. For a day or two, the house seems so bland and plain and without life.

However, the "Light" of the season still remains all year round, and brings life to us moment by moment of every day. John 8:12: "When Jesus spoke to the people, he said, "I am the Light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." Life without Christ has to be dull, drab, lonely, scary, and without hope. Christ came to earth to bring to the world His light and to give us the light of life, not just for today but for eternity. God wants us as believers to testify to the Light, and not hide our lights under a bushel. We are like the candle that lights up the darkness to those who do not believe. When Jesus met Paul at the Damascus road, and shined His light on Paul, Jesus gave Paul a commission to go to the Jews first, then to the Gentiles, "to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me."

Is God giving us any less of a commission today? He said---"Go and make disciples." We are to be lights in the world. We are to be different, we are to dispel the darkness in others' lives. We are not to be ashamed of the gospel of Christ. We are not to hide our lights under a bushel. Shine for Jesus this year! Let others see that your candle shines brightly in your hearts day by day! Let Christ shine in and through you this year!

Shine brightly for Jesus!

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Catching Up and Moving Forward

Please forgive me for not keeping up with my blogging over the holidays, but each day was so full and I wanted to soak in every moment of the blessings God sent our way over the holidays. I was so blessed wiith having family with us for two weeks prior to Christmas: my niece (Lisa) from West Virginia, her daughter, Arley, Arley's brother from California, and our son and his family of 4. The days were spent with all the Christmas traditions that I hold specially dear to my heart each year---my angel tree filled to the brim this year with angels gifted to me over the years, lights inside and out, red and green everywhere, with baking cookies, fruit cake, writing my Christmas letter, receiving so many wonderful cards in return, mostly planning three meals a day and eating way too much for two weeks! My greatest joy of all was when 8 of us filled a whole row at both the Sunday morning service at church and the Monday Christmas Eve service prior to Christmas. It allowed us as a family to focus on the glorious fact of Jesus' birth and what His leaving glory to come to earth on our behalf really means to each of us individually. We had lots of laughter, lots of relaxing times in front of an open fire in the fireplace, with hot cocoa in the evenings warming our noses, eager anticipation of the Christmas morning and presents, and a wonderful meal later on. As Mom, Nana, and Auntie, I reveled in the warmth of family----thus, I did not take the time to blog. For some reason, I think you'll understand.

A new year is now here, a time to focus on new goals and recommiting ourselves to accomplishing those goals. My number one goal each year always seems to be to get more healthy by eating better, exercising more and losing weight. Every other year I commit myself to read the Bible through. This is the year I begin again to accomplish that goal. As I grow older, it seems more necessary to read the Word with the idea of planting it deep within my heart so that when I need it, it comes to the surface more readily. This old brain is getting slower and slower and I need to "exercise" the brain to capture God's Word to a greater degree.

There is so much in God's Word that brings comfort and peace, especially as we face a world that is far from peaceful. In reading the days of Noah just this morning, I was impressed at what God found acceptable in Noah to allow him and his family to be saved from destruction from the flood. Gen. 6:9:..."And Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God." Verse 22: "Noah did everything just as God commanded him." Noah was a man committed to following God and His commands. As we face the new year, we need to recommit ourselves to following God and His plan for us. It is becoming harder and harder for Christians to stand firm in their beliefs and trust God to bring good out of the chaos we see around us everywhere, but we must if we are to receive God's favor! I pray for strength and courage for every Christian to stand firm and walk with God so that you might be blameless and find hope and security in 2008!

Happy New Year!