I’m gonna pull in a few loose threads for today’s post. There’ve been a few things that I haven’t included for one reason or another recently – whether for length or direction (sometimes posts have a mind of their own and can change direction without notice. ask any blogger this). 🙂
The common thread if you will; the word “recently” …
…left me a few surprises on my phone. It’s my own fault really, I’d put it in her room to charge for a bit. The rest is history. Hence today’s feature photo.
We’re one step closer to graduation. Liz got her 3rd grading period results in the mail and we got confirmation that they arrived Thursday (a collective “Phew!” was uttered by both girls!).
Lord willing she’ll enroll in a French high school, next fall, to perfect her written & spoken French as well as obtain a French diploma giving her maximum flexibility for the future.
Recently at the church…
Last week I said we were headed to the church to do some work… the boys outside and the girls in. Here’s a glimpse at what the boys did.
Our church property is enclosed by a chain-link fence and on 2.5 sides of that property a large evergreen hedge sits just inside it. The problem is, this hedge variety grows very quickly (remember the hack-job 2 years ago?).
To maintain neighbourly relations, it’s common courtesy to keep one’s hedges from growing through the fence onto someone else’s property. It’d been several years since that was done so we began and managed to clear through the entire width of the property. We still have to trim the top, but that’ll be for another day.
Recently… A taste of home.
It’s silly how it’s sometimes the little things that you miss when living as an expat.
On March 17th, out of the blue, Timo said, “Dad, we need to make shamrock shakes again since it’s St. Patrick’s Day.”
McDonald’s came up with them years ago to capitalize on yet another holiday: A green, mint-flavoured milkshake that can only be had in the month of March.
The French would look at you like you had two heads if you asked for one in McDonald’s here (even though their normal flavours include Blueberry & marshmallow) so the only way to have one is to mix vanilla ice-cream, some mild and some green, mint-flavoured syrup (readily available in stores here).
Something so small & so easy, but that just transports us “home”.
Recently… religious right-wing!
Sometimes it amazes me how people can twist scripture to come up with things that are really wayyyyy out there.
Recently, I was on an early morning walk in Bordeaux when I came across this sign on a fence.
“Don’t pray any longer in the name of Jesus Christ”
What’s more… they gave scripture verses to back it up (Rev. 2.17 & 3.12). These say that it’s because Jesus will eventually be given a new name.
That may be the case, after his return but we’re not there yet and to base abandonment of Jesus’ name in the here & now, on scripture, is to completely miss the point of the Bible.
The Old Testament was consumed with underscoring mankind’s inability to maintain a close relationship with God based on rules and customs. It was also consumed with pointing mankind to a Messiah that would bridge the gap and accomplish, via his perfect sacrifice, what our imperfection could not. This is the story of Isaiah 53.
In the New Testament, Jesus repeatedly said that we should ask for things in his name. And Paul, after Jesus’ death, indicated that everything we do, whether in word or deed, should be done in Jesus’ name (Col. 3.17).
So until Christ returns… the Bible is clear: the focus is, and must be, on Jesus’ name. What those two verses in Revelation will look like practically speaking is, as yet, unknown.
If the devil can succeed in moving people away from Jesus and reliance on his name he will be delighted. But the devil thought he had won already some 2,000 years ago when Jesus hung on the cross.
He didn’t stay there…
Friend, whatever you do, don’t take your eyes off of Jesus. His name is the only saving name. It’s important. It is! Don’t be like that nameless, faceless person in Bordeaux who took two verses out of context and made them say something they weren’t intended to say.
All scripture is God breathed and needs to be read in context, since verses always complement and inform each other.
Why the red amaryllis?
…because it recently bloomed at our house.
I love these flowers… it’s kind of like a Christmas version of the Easter lily in some respects: Trumpet-like flowers on a tall lean stem. But these ones are red… and they remind me that the blood of Jesus flowed down from a cross so that my imperfections would not hinder me from having a relationship with himself… If I would put my trust in his name and obey his word.
Until we get to the resurrection… that is the focal point of the cross.
God bless you this Easter weekend!
Trust his name!