Called to March

From Luke 23:44-46:  “It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, while the sun’s light failed, and the curtain of the temple was torn in two.  Then Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said, ‘Father, into Your hands I commend My spirit.’  Having said this, He breathed his last.”

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Darkness surrounds solemn ground

Bloodied cross witnesses death

Son of Man’s reign ending now

His journey, now out of breath

 

Heartless enemy praises

Night sky covers grave of death

Disciples fleeing . . . hiding

But grace, never out of breath

 

Son of God shall rise, be seen

Morning light erases death

Praising over vacant tomb

Alleluia fills each breath

 

Called to march with our Savior

Love forever conquers death

Crown beloved Christ, our King

Mercy’s everlasting breath

Photo by Rodolfo Clix on Pexels.com

From Matthew 28:5-6:  “But the angel said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified.  He is not here, for He has been raised, as He said.  Come, see the place where He lay.'”

Love’s Expressions (Haiku Series #205)

Discovered

Deepest emotions

Hidden in life’s tallest grass—

Embrace heartfelt love

Photo by Feyza Tuu011fba on Pexels.com

Gifted

 Asked to explain love

Filled with honest reflections—

Sharing sweetest thoughts

Photo by Budgeron Bach on Pexels.com

Unified

 Marriage joins as one

Love’s odyssey of blessings—

Always one more dance

Photo by Gary Barnes on Pexels.com

Faith’s New Song

From Psalm 98:1:  “O sing to the Lord a new song, for He has done marvelous things.  His right hand and His holy arm have gotten Him victory.”

Photo by cottonbro studio on Pexels.com

Praising God in Heaven

Faith’s new song

Singing of His goodness

Always strong

 

Revealing steadfast love

Mercy rings

Sharing faith’s victory

Christ, our King

 

Marking each joyful note

Faith sings out

Resounding with trumpets

Grace shall shout

 

Hearing all oceans roar

Faith claps hands

Coming of our Savior

As God planned

 

Breathing with His delight

Spirit sings

Shepherding every lamb

Faith’s wellspring

 

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

From Psalm 98:3:  “He has remembered His steadfast love and faithfulness to the house of Israel.  All the ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God.”

Martha Williamson Quote

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

Mercy is His gift.  You shine with His divine light every time you are merciful and forgive someone.

From Ephesians 4:32:  “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.”

Martha Williamson is a television producer, who is best known for her contributions as the head writer and executive producer of the award-winning television series, “Touched by an Angel.”

Grandparents Love Story (Episode Two)

From 1939, a scene of downtown Billings, Montana. This is the eventual home for a young couple moving to Billings about three years earlier. (courtesy of Pinterest)

Grandparents Jim and Marge experienced a love story that began in their teenage years.  Little did they know where life planned to take them in the years to come.

In 1911, Jim was born in the tiny town of Marmarth, North Dakota.  The small community of about 800 was founded as a railroad town along the Milwaukee Road line.  The transcontinental railroad traveled from Chicago, Illinois to Seattle, Washington.

When Jim was an infant, his family moved to Cleveland, Ohio.  He excelled academically and athletically during his school years.

Born in 1912, Marge already lived in Ohio when Jim moved there.  Eventually their lives intersected during junior high school.  Her father was a Cleveland native while her mother was born in Belfast, Ireland.

With their love blossoming, Jim and Marge were married in 1928.  Jim pursued his career goal of becoming an engineer with his studies at the University of Akron. 

Sadly, the arrival of the Great Depression crushed Jim’s pursuit of a college degree.  With money very tight, Jim needed to pursue a different career.

In 1936, Jim, Marge, and their first-born son traveled to Billings, Montana.  Jim had been hired to work for a wholesale and produce grocer.  Working for the Gamble-Robinson Company for 40 years, Jim eventually became the general manager of its Billings office.

When World War II arrived, Jim accepted his responsibility and served with distinction in the U.S. Army until being honorably discharged at the war’s end.  Meanwhile his young family endured without him being at home. 

Marge and her three young children managed to make life as pleasant as possible during Jim’s wartime absence.  Unable to drive a car, Marge used other means for transportation.  Rationing of vital commodities during the war made for useful transactions because Marge traded her gasoline ration cards for other ones. 

Billings was growing, but it still had the feel of a smaller, close-knit community.  Neighbors helped out each other.  Church was a center of worship and fellowship for the young family as well.

When Jim returned home, the family continued to live in Billings at the same home.  As childhood sweethearts, Jim and Marge experienced quite a life journey, which took them from their former homes in Ohio to a lasting one in Montana. 

This story recalled the start of my mother’s family.  Being the middle child and only daughter (born in 1938), Martha started a family of her own with the birth of her first child in 1956 (Richard).  Eventually the family would number five sons and one daughter.  

Previously, the story of my paternal grandparents was published.  In case you missed it, here is a link:  Grandparents Love Story (Episode One).

Alfred Nobel Quotes

Photo by Sam Lion on Pexels.com

Contentment is the only real wealth.

A heart can no more be forced to love than a stomach can be forced to digest food by persuasion.

Alfred Nobel (1833-1896) was a Swedish chemist, engineer, and philanthropist.  While he was known as the inventor of dynamite and blasting caps, his influence has been felt for generations due to his generosity.  He bequeathed his personal fortune to fund the Nobel Prize.

Walter J. Chantry Quote

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Saddest of all God’s creatures in the world is the religious person who has disciplined himself to outward obedience, but who has no inward love to God.

From John 14:23-24:  “Jesus answered him, ‘Those who love me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.  Whoever does not love me does not keep my words, and the word that you hear is not mine but is from the Father who sent me.'”

Walter J. Chantry (born 1938) served for 39 years as pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.  He was also an prolific Christian writer and editor.

Oswald Chambers Quote

Courtesy of Pinterest

The real test of the saint is not preaching the Gospel, but washing disciples’ feet, that is, doing the things that do not count in the actual estimate of men, but count everything in the estimate of God.

From 2 Corinthians 12:15:  “I will most gladly spend and be spent for you.  If I love you more, am I to be loved less?”

Oswald Chambers (1874-1917) was a Scottish evangelist and Christian teacher.  Following his death from an illness while in Egypt during World War I, his wife took on the task of transcribing the detailed notes she had written from his lectures and sermons.  Gertrude Hobbs Chambers’ efforts resulted in the publication in 1924 of MY UTMOST FOR HIS HIGHEST.  I frequently read from this devotional, and it has greatly deepened my faith and understanding of God’s Word.

Life’s Preciousness

Photo by Vlada Karpovich on Pexels.com

Recalling life’s preciousness

Cherishing every moment

Savoring family’s past

Dreaming of tomorrow’s hugs

 

Recounting lasting blessings

Beholding father’s wisdom

Echoing voice of knowledge

Conquering each new challenge

 

Reflecting on nature’s gifts

Catching creation’s newness

Framing winter’s white portrait

Tasting another sunrise

 

Waking to morning coffee

Embracing daily treasures

Mapping out daily shortcuts

Visiting newfound places

 

Gathering of long-time friends

Revealing closeness of all

Enjoying hours filled with joy

Discovering something new

 

Photo by RODNAE Productions on Pexels.com

Overflowing Kindness (Haiku Series #201)

Preparing

Sowing seeds of love

Reaping bountiful harvest–

Spirit plants kindness

Photo by Yahaya Tetteh on Pexels.com

Transforming

Kindness breathing grace

Actions sweeter than honey—

Purging bitterness

Photo by Pavel Danilyuk on Pexels.com

Benevolence

Words packed with kindness

Unlocking life’s path of peace–

Melting hardened hearts

Photo by Johannes Plenio on Pexels.com