Tuesday, December 18, 2007

1 Corinthians 13 - The Christmas version

I got this from a devotional I read this morning. It was off of a friend's website. Someone had emailed it to her and she posted it. I thought it was so great, I wanted to share it here. I hope it blesses your day.

If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights and shiny balls, but do not show love, I’m just another decorator.

If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime, but not show love, I’m just another cook.

If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love, it profits me nothing.

If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir’s cantata but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point.

Love stops the cooking to hug the child.

Love sets aside the decorating to kiss the husband.

Love is kind, though harried and tired.

Love doesn’t envy another’s home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.

Love doesn’t yell at the kids to get out of the way, but is thankful they are there to be in the way.

Love doesn’t give only to those who are able to give in return but rejoices in giving to those who can’t.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never fails.

Video games will break, pearl necklaces will be lost, golf clubs will rust, but giving the gift of love will endure.

Merry Christmas and lots of love to all of you!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Roller Coasters and Life

Am I the only person who needs a vacation to recover from a vacation? Aw, we had fun, but I'm exhausted! My parents generously took us to Dollywood this week located in the Smokey Mountains of Tennessee. Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg. Absolutely beautiful this time of year.

So, we braved the weather (which was nice for the most part if you discounted the frost bite after the sun went down) and did the amusement park deal. Which is the perfect time for homeschoolers to go because we basically had the park to ourselves. No lines, no crowds, no blazing hot heat stroke weather.

My kids (and 60+ year old mother) LOVE the roller coaster rides. Their favorite was Thunderhead, a totally wooden roller coaster. There are only two like it in the world, one in Dollywood and one in Germany.

As I was watching my daughter’s sheer enjoyment of the ride, I thought to myself, “I want her to grow up enjoying life as much as she’s enjoying that ride. I want her to treat life like that roller coaster.”

You see, they sit you in the seat then pull a safety bar down around you. As you go around the track, swerving up, down and all around, you hang on for dear life on some parts, on others, you throw your hands up to the mercy of the ride, screaming with laughter, sometimes a little fear, but with the assurance you’ll arrive at the finish line in one piece. I thought that was awesome.

What if we treated life like a roller coaster ride?

What if we got in the seat (ready for what life throws at us), pulled our safety bar down around us (God), and as we race around the track (life) knowing we’ll have ups and downs, bumps and swerves, sometimes winding upside down and desperate to find ourselves right side up, what if we grab tight to that safety bar (God), the one thing that can keep us safe and right where we need to be when troubles come our way, then when those pass, throw our hands up high and say, “I’m at your mercy, God, do what you will with me.” Then scream with joy and laughter as God takes us on the ride of our lives. And throughout the ride, all the ups and downs, twists and swerves, know with peaceful assurance, we’re going to land at the finish line (heaven) in one piece.

How awesome would that be?

Just my thought for the day…