Tag Archives: Heb 13:5

Holiday Traditions

It’s the most Wonderful time of the year….

There’ll be parties for hosting…

Marshmallows for toasting and

Caroling out in the snow *

As the song says, It’s the most Wonderful time of the year…. although some of the traditions listed might not be among those you and your family participate in I am sure you have some. Some families hand-make raviolis, some make boxes of cookies,  others send letters with a summation of the years events. Whatever the case may be for you and yours I am certain that you have warm memories of the traditions that this time of year always brings.

For me, It’s a Wonderful Life** is always a part of the Christmas season. I can have it playing in the background as we trim the tree or make out cards to send. I suspect I can recite it verbatim by now and have my favorite parts as well as the scenes I would like to past over.

As many of you may know it’s a story of how a man gets a chance to see how the world would be if he never existed. It’s a real eye-opener to see how much one man can impact the lives of so many people even if he doesn’t know it. Keeping in mind that it is a fictional account of how things might be I feel it drives home several valuable points.

Point One – Every single person is important and special. Regardless of how we look or what we do or where we live or what we have or do not have – we are each very unique and play a role on this stage of life that no one else could.

I will praise You
because I have been remarkably and wonderfully madePs 139:14

Point Two – Money isn’t the most important thing in the world. George Bailey jumps off of a bridge because he is faced with scandal, bankruptcy and jail over the lose of a large sum of money. In the end we see that he is the wealthiest guy in town because he has friends who love him and come to his defense.

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains.- 1Tim 6:10

Final Point – Be content with what you have. God loves you and will not leave you or forsake you. As the saying goes – “grow where you’re planted”. I am not saying that we shouldn’t be ambitious and work hard to better ourselves but not at the cost of being discontented with our current life.

Your life should be free from the love of money. Be satisfied with what you have, for He Himself has said, I will never leave you or forsake you. – Heb 13:5

We watch George Bailey grow from a happy, self-assured young man with lofty goals of seeing the world become a sullen broken-spirited and angry man who feels trapped in his dead-end job and middle class lifestyle. He sees those around him move on to successful careers. The straw that breaks the camels back is the lose of a large sum of money by his business partner Uncle Billy. Believing he is worth more dead than alive George jumps off of a nearby bridge. After the dreamlike sight of a world without him George is returned to his life with a new outlook and appreciation of what he has. I always look around me and appreciate what I have when I watch this movie because – truly It Is A Wonderful Life !

This Christmas Season I hope that all of us carry the love of God to those around us as we enjoy what we have and celebrate the Greatest Gift of all – Jesus !

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*”It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a popular Christmas song written in 1963 by Edward Pola and George Wyle. It was recorded and released that year by pop singer Andy Williams for his first Christmas album, The Andy Williams Christmas Album
**It’s a Wonderful Life is a 1946 American Christmas fantasy comedy-drama film produced and directed by Frank Capra, based on the short story “The Greatest Gift”, which Philip Van Doren Stern wrote in 1939 and published privately in 1945

This a test.This is only a test…….

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Pr. 3:5-6 KJV

Trust in The Lord. Such easy advise to dispense. Yet, we all face a time in our lives when we must walk this talk. It could come when a Doctor gives us a bad report. That time could come when our company downsizes and lets us go. Perhaps that time might be when we are faced with a difficult decision or when we are at a cross road in our lives. No matter what kind of test we face, be assured it is only a test. The question is can we stand the test?

The Word of God tells us that God knows our frame (Ps 103:14). That is He knows what we can bear. The Word also tells us that God will provide a way to escape each test. Far more encouraging is the fact that Jesus was tried and tempted in all ways and passed!(Heb 4:15) Even so, Jesus did ask if, when He returns, will He find faith on the Earth (Luke 18:8). What a question for Him to ask. Why would He ask such a question anyway? Was He wondering if we were just going to fall away from believing? Just stop having Faith? Or, is it that He knew ahead of time what we will be facing?
Tests come in various sizes and types. Some are simple temptations to give in to the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh or the boastful pride of life. Others are much bigger than that. Testing our very belief that God will provide, heal, save or forgive.

Care for you

Care for you

As I mentioned earlier, it is easy to speak of Faith and trust and yet another thing to walk it out. But, it is the walking that we grow from faith to faith. If we can believe God for the little things we can trust Him for the bigger things later. In the Old Testament God revealed Himself to the children of Israel at specific times. He showed Himself to be Jehovah Nissi – The Lord is my Banner (Ex 17:15);  Jehovah Jireh – The Lord will Provide (Gen 22:14); Jehovah Shalom – The Lord is Peace (Judges 6:24); Jehovah Raah – The Lord is my Shepherd (Ps 23:1) and many others.Likewise, Jesus has many names  – Wonderful, Counselor, Price of Peace and Savoir to list a few. Jesus told us that He does and says only what He sees the Father do and so He is the personification of Almighty God. So, if we have doubt in our hearts as to whether or not God cares for us we need only remind ourselves of just Who He Is and who we are to Him.

Jesus came and spoke to them, saying,….”I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:20 NKJV

 Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said,

“Never will I leave you;  never will I forsake you” Heb. 13:5 NIV