Sparkling Pieces

I recently watched the documentary on Tammy Faye and Jim Bakker.  I put her first because even though he was the preacher, she was the main act.  She did have a beautiful voice and maybe for a time, didn’t know exactly what was going on.  They lived an extraordinary and very wealthy life.  They were “out there” weren’t they?

Most of the world (like you and I), live a simple, ordinary life.  We do not wear fur coats (nor would we!), we do not attend red carpet events, and we keep track of expenses with an app or an old-fashioned check register.

God loves every single person on this earth.  He loves every type of person.  No matter their standing in life, political beliefs, even if they have murdered someone.  Because He is God; no one can love any one person more than He can. 

In our ordinary life, is faith.  We live here temporarily; our afterlife is the Kingdom of God where there will be more riches and gold than we could ever imagine.  We will dance on floors embedded with jewels we’ve never seen before.  And we will not be ordinary citizens any longer!

Revelation 21:18-20

The wall was made of jasper, and the city itself was made of pure gold, as clear as glass. The foundation stones of the city wall were adorned with all kinds of precious stones. The first foundation stone was jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, the fourth emerald, 20 the fifth onyx, the sixth carnelian, the seventh yellow quartz, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chalcedony, the eleventh turquoise, the twelfth amethyst.

Revelation 21:21

The twelve gates were twelve pearls; each gate was made from a single pearl. The street of the city was of pure gold, transparent as glass.

Gold gates. The gates of paradise in the clouds royalty free illustration

Grieving Pieces

Last month I shared the loss of my friend Carol who passed away after battling cancer, the death of her husband and her zest for life. I think the latter is what is the most sad. We’ve had another loss in our family; the kids’ mom, my husband’s first wife. She also was tired of the pain and being a burden on her kids (a mother is never a burden).

Grieving is so difficult no matter what stage you are in. My mother died in 1978, she was 53 years old and I was 14. It’s been 43 years since I’ve seen her. The hope that she is with Jesus soothes my broken heart.

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Matthew 5:12 Be happy about it! Be very glad! for a tremendous reward awaits you up in heaven.

1 Peter 1:4 And God has reserved for his children the priceless gift of eternal life; it is kept in heaven for you…

Heaven Bound Church's 2nd Homecoming, 14434 Church St, Gulfport, MS  39503-8634, United States, August 29 2021 | AllEvents.in

Yesterday, an acquaintance shared the story of an 103 year old woman who; in excellent health asked in her daily prayer: “Jesus, did you forget about me?” She was heaven-bound a few months later. Jesus never forgets us, but it’s all in His time, not ours.

May you be blessed while grieving, may your heart heal with the balm of God’s love. Peace.

A big sigh

Have you ever sat in your chair or stared out the window and just did a big sigh? I’ve been doing this frequently. I don’t know what it means. My friend passed away last week, I’ve been certainly grieving the loss, while planning the Celebration of Life (what an oxymoron)! But overall I feel disconnected and have a need to stay unusually busy.

A sigh isn't just a sigh. We inhale the world and breathe out meaning. While we can. While we can Picture Quote #1

I wonder if God sighs when He looks at our chaotic lives. Does He ask Himself; “I gave these human beings a good heart and mind, why do they worry and create so much tension for themselves?”

True Pieces

I’ve been away from the blog for awhile, as I’ve been caring for a friend who has several health concerns and is now in hospice. A few days ago I was tasked with the job of finding caregivers and hospice and arranging for med delivery and all sorts of things that weren’t in my wheelhouse. Never in my life have I been so grateful for the internet! 🙂

What I did find after a long day of phone calls and appointments, was the grace of God. He literally put the pieces together, and it was not lost on me that I needed to update the blog and be thankful for the sense of humor Jesus shares with me on occasion. Pieces in relation to this blog and the book, do not just mean scraps of paper; now they are true pieces; almost like parts of a puzzle that fit together; primarily when I let God take charge; instead of me.

Growth Pieces

As we walk in faith, growth builds our spiritual character.

I remember as a young child, attending Sunday school, how fun it was singing “Jesus Loves Me,” and learning about Noah. Or making macaroni necklaces at camp. As I was confirmed into my Lutheran church, there was a lot of scripture memorization and being able to ask the Pastor serious life questions. I doubt any of us did, maybe out of embarrassment or just the times (1975). For most of us in our confirmation class, it was a rite of passage. An obligation. I don’t recall it changing my life in any way. Three years later my mother died. This shock to my system, faith, and reality began a 25 year journey of anger towards God. I occasionally attended church, but my heart wasn’t in it. Any religion or spirituality became non-existent.

God never gave up on me. He met me where I was. God’s grace saved me.

I’ve had a lot of stops and starts on this journey. But each day I know who I am (a child of God), I know that my steps are blessedly marked and that I have an eternal home.

Keep growing, changing, believing, seeing, letting go, forgiving (yourself), and trust in the will of God, He will never leave you alone. And remember, He is a life changer, second chance bringer and breaker of chains.

May you be blessed this week!

Pieces of Discontent

We don’t one day, just decide we aren’t happy/satisfied/content with our life. It usually is a slow process of disappointment, sadness, guilt, or a myriad of emotions. But the thing we have to remember (beat my head against the wall), is that our God doesn’t want us living by emotions. He wants us to trust Him 150% for every single in our life. He desires that we are content, free of worthlessness, and substantially filled with His grace.

When hard times come, and they will; and they have, it is then we must lean heavy on our faith, the strength of Christ, the commitment to walking blindly (this is grace). And oftentimes, these stumbling blocks are to draw us closer to Him. He only ever wants to be in our lives; it is us; the stubborn human beings who say “I can do it, God,” or “I can’t wait for your timing, I need to get this resolved now.” (And watch, that never ends well)!

And the biggest misquoted statement of our generation: “Tough times never last, but tough people do.” What a lie the enemy has served up. Only the strong survive? If that were true we wouldn’t have a need for Christ in our life. He is the mighty strength in our life; count on that during every moment in your life. May you be blessed by His love and spirit.

Easter Blessings

May the glory and the promise of this joyous time of year bring peace and happiness to you and those you hold most dear.

And may Christ, Our Risen Savior, always be there by your side to bless you most abundantly and be your loving guide.

— Author Unknown

Lord we lift our hearts to you. As the dawn breaks, may we carry the unity we share into every moment knowing that we are one with the risen Christ. Lord, we lift our eyes to you. As the sunrises, may this moment stay with us, reminding us to look for the beautiful colors of promise in your word. Lord, we lift our prayers to you. As the dew air falls, may we breathe this morning in and know that like the earth, you sustain us, keep us and work within us always. And so, we lift our voices to you. We celebrate the greatest day in history, when Jesus rose from death, defeated darkness and bathed the world in stunning resurrection light. May we ever live to praise you! Amen.

Author Unknown

Happy Easter May The Renewal Of Life At Easter Bring New Blessings | Happy  easter quotes, Easter inspirational quotes, Happy easter pictures

Christ is Risen: The world below lies desolate

Christ is Risen: The spirits of evil are fallen

Christ is Risen: The angels of God are rejoicing

Christ is Risen: The tombs of the dead are empty

Christ is Risen indeed from the dead, the first of the sleepers, Glory and power are his forever and ever.

— St. Hippolytus of Rome

Lord God,

You loved this world so much,

That you gave your one and only Son,

That we might be called your children too.

Lord, help us to live in the gladness and grace

Of Easter Sunday, everyday.

Let us have hearts of thankfulness

For your sacrifice.

Let us have eyes that look upon

Your grace and rejoice in our salvation.

Help us to walk in that mighty grace

And tell your good news to the world.

All for your glory do we pray, Lord,

Amen.

Rachel Marie Stone

Passover Pieces

On Sunday, March 28, both Palm Sunday and Passover are celebrated.

Palm Sunday is the Christian holiday that occurs on the Sunday before Easter. This celebration commemorates Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem , mentioned in each of the four Gospels. Jesus entered the city knowing He would be tried and crucified and welcomed His fate to rise from the grave and save us from sin!

I did a lot of research on the meaning of Passover and how it is presented. This link is very informative, I hope you explore!

A year ago, I was invited to a Seder dinner, unfortunately, due to the pandemic, it was cancelled. I was so looking forward to it. Perhaps another invite will come my way next year! (Hint hint to my Jewish friends)!

Passover | Story, Meaning, Traditions, & Facts | Britannica

Lent Pieces

Lent is an incredibly powerful time of year. We read daily scripture or stories leading up to the arrest, judgment, crucifixion, resurrection, 40 days Jesus lived on earth and the final ascension. It’s important as believers that we know WHY we are saved, the sacrifice that was made for our freedom from sin, forgiveness and the promise of an eternal home.

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The road to the cross was heartbreaking for all who had walked with and followed Jesus’ ministry. From his family and disciples, to those who had been miraculously healed, shared in a meal of fish and loaves that fed 5,000 people, water turned into wine.

Jesus was loved and held. His mother wept and grieved. Some denied His existence. Others ran from guilt. And in the end, He took the nails for us. By His stripes we are healed. He arose from the dead. He walked for 40 days in human form. And then, in a cloud of glory Jesus returned to Heaven to sit at the throne with His Heavenly Father.

What greater love has ever sacrificed?

Empty Tomb

Scraps of Paper

“The Pieces” the book and this blog, started out from scraps of paper I would write and save. Usually from a morning meditation or a scripture that called to me. In time, I had an envelope full of these scraps and a desire in my heart to share The Good News with those who may be like minded; but more so – those who weren’t. Those who needed a new lease on life.

Write your love to God on a heart!

Since the book was published and this blog read; I’ve received very good feedback. Thanks for all who have followed my personal walk of faith. I haven’t updated a few parts; that I became Catholic at Easter, 2019. Or that I still am close to the two other churches I was involved with; Episcopalian and UU. I’ve never believed God puts a “stamp of approval” on a certain religion, but I do believe you must be born again (walk a life of faith) to enter the Kingdom of God. And that you must dislodge selfishness and share the love of Christ with all.

There is an old song by The Imperials, I heard today on Pandora, it’s called “Old Buddha” It’s a reminder that the most charismatic or born again Christian, or lifelong Baptist won’t get into heaven if he hates another.

Hate is a hard pill. We all have experienced, either personally or through life the past year. It’s not always about race, gender, sometimes people just decide to hate others because they were raised that way, or they would rather agree/disagree than have a voice.

This post does seem to be going every which way, right? Sometimes my brain isn’t connected with my fingers typing, but God authors these posts, so I just have to go with it. May you be blessed in your daily lives. Take time for prayer, gratitude, and love for your neighbor.

6th May 2018 – 6th Sunday of Easter (B) | Church Of Christ The King