Tag Archives: forgiveness

White as Snow

Good morning, Father! The fire is warm by my side though I can hear the cold wind blowing outside. And it is dark but I know the beautiful snow continues to fall.

Prior to the last couple of days, Ohio has experienced a “brown” winter season -lots of rain, which equals lots of mud. Most trees are bare, so much of the scenery is a brownish grey. But today… when the sun comes up today our eyes will behold a new and fresh landscape! Ohioans will wake to a carpet of shimmering white – snow has come! And it is beautiful!

Many live in a perpetual “brown” winter – not so much in the world around them but from a spiritual perspective. Life has rained upon our parade. Life is dreary. There is nothing vibrant, just a world of browns and greys. And that’s the way it is day after day after day. Life is a muddy mess and many are drowning in hopelessness.

Sin and all its repercussions overwhelm us. It is all that can be seen – seemingly a never ending panorama of gloom… and doom. And that doom is all too real. Without someone intervening it will lead to not just a temporary separation from God but an eternal one. In and of ourselves there is no light at the end of the tunnel – this is no hope.

But praise be to God, we have Christ! When Christ comes into the picture change and with it – hope – arrives . He covers over the browns and greys – the sin in our lives – with the pure snow of His love and forgiveness. And as long as we remain in relationship with Him the beauty of His presence remains in our lives.

Isaiah 1:18 reads,

“Come now let’s settle this, says the Lord,” Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow…”

The beauty and purity of newly fallen snow becomes a reality in our “brown” world – Thank You, Lord!

Jan 12th, Tues, 5:52 am

What I Deserve vs. What I Receive

I realize, Father, that it is only because of Jesus that I can sit in Your presence this morning. I am quite often astounded that I am so eagerly welcomed. I am so grateful that Jesus’ extreme sacrifice and the blood He shed covers my multitude of sins, which is the only reason that I can be with You. It saddens me to think of the many; many times I have had to seek forgiveness for the things I have done that were outside of Your will for me. But I am gladdened because though I fall, You would rather I would seek Your face instead of turning away, defeated and not return. Truly I don’t deserve it. Punishment and death is what I deserve but grace and mercy are what is extended to me… Thank You, Father for the most precious of all gifts! May my heart and mind be focused on You this day. Enable me to stay true to You, to live out Your call on my life. Help me to wholeheartedly love You in response to Your love for me and in so doing may that love shower those around me. Because I have been so richly blessed “make me a blessing out of my life may Jesus shine. Make me a blessing to someone today.” It is the least I can do! Fill me this day. I am Yours to use as You will.

Sept 28th, Mon, 6:31 am

A Tall Order

Father, today may I be a vessel used of You. All that I do and say, all that I have had a hand in, may it all be used by You to lift You up so others can see You more clearly. As John the Baptist said of Your Son, “He must increase but I must decrease.” John 3:30 May this be my proclamation today.

1 Timothy 2:1 (<<click here)

I am called to pray, Lord, for all people”. This, obviously, is an all-inclusive statement and that is how it must be. As I think about the width of it, “all” includes a lot of people who don’t think like I do. It includes, literally millions who don’t think like You do! But You, very clearly call me to “ask [You] to help them.” You call me to “intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them.” That is one tall order! And the thing is that it is way more than people just not thinking like You do. They oppose You! Many deny Your very existence! But You called us to pray for them, to ask that You help them, to intercede on their behalf, to be thankful for them! Yes…that is a tall order but how can I do anything less. All I have to do is to look at our relationship – Yours and mine. Have I done anything to deserve Your love? No… Am I worthy in and of myself, to be accepted by You? No… The only thing that enables this sinner to stand in Your presence is that fact that I have accepted Your love and forgiveness – grace has been extended and gratefully accepted. (Thank You, Lord…)

Lord, help me to pray, and intercede and thank You for those who are not a part of Your family…yet!  And help me do it one person at a time, each and every day!

August 28th, Fri, 6:49 am

I’m the One Who Needs Forgiven

Good morning, Father! I am so grateful that this has become a regular part of my schedule. I would ask that You would help me to never take it for granted but that I will always cherish our time together. And I think that’s what is foundational is that I cherish You! I have incalculable reasons why I should cherish You, I just need help realizing them. As Your Word directs, may I love You with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength!

Colossians 3:13 (<<click here)

Forgiveness – Lord, over my lifetime we have worked through so many incidents where I have needed to forgive. Most I can’t even recall but a few of them were huge! Being asked to step down from an associate pastor’ position with no reason given, being unable to refinance our home because of an employer’s comments, being encouraged to leave the nest of security in another associate pastor’s position to became a Senior pastor when I felt I wasn’t ready. In those situations the hurt, the confusion, the anger – they consumed my every thought it seems. In the heat of the moment, I was unable – make that unwilling to forgive. Together, You helping me, I have been able to forgive. Thank You, Lord that I no longer have to carry that baggage.

And looking back, I am the better for the experiences I have had. Sometimes things just don’t make sense – we just have to move on. Sometimes people are just apathetic to our situations, but we just must press on towards our goal – and sometimes we are the problem. Many times people love us and want what is best for us but we are blinded by fear and uncertainty. When the dust finally clears we find we are the ones who need forgiven.

Lord, thank You for taking the hard times, the extremely difficult times of my life and using them to make me stronger, to make me more sensitive to the needs and predicaments of others, to make me more and more appreciative of what You have done for me.

June 22nd, Mon, 5:58 am