About Marie

Happily married to the same awesome guy for 48 years. Love God, reading, cats and travel. Avid crafter, especially counted cross stitch and crochet.

52-Week Devotional Journal for Women – Book Review

I have been blessed and honored to review Deb Wolf’s first book, 52-Week Devotional Journal for Women. I could hardly wait to receive it and when I opened it it was all I expected and more!

This book offers 52 short studies on subjects that affect women’s lives. These include: comparing ourselves to those around us, thankfulness, God’s protection, finding joy, prayer, unity, humbleness, the El Roi, worry, and so much more.

Deb’s writing is real, reflective, and so ‘down to earth’. It’s like having a personal mentor walking you through some of life’s challenges. The journaling/writing she offers in each devotion draws one close to the One and Only. The great blessing of this kind of journaling is there is no right or wrong answer.

Thank you, Deb! This is a great personal resource! I can hardly wait for a new one each year! Hint! Hint!

The book 52-Week Devotional Journal For Women is now available on Amazon.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Callisto Media/Rockridge Press Publishing. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

This post may contain affiliate links.  When you use them I may receive a small commission that helps support the costs of maintaining this blog.

Conclude

I will conclude this difficult year by:

Finishing well! I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 2 Timothy 4:7

Ending with a new beginning in mind!  Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 2 Corinthians 5:17

Stop! Then the angel told them, “Stop being afraid! Listen! I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people. Luke 2:10 

Cease any grumbling or complaining! Do everything without complaining (grumbling) and arguing… Philippians 2:14

And so, I will end this year on a happy note… Rejoice in the Lord always and again I say rejoice! Philippians 4:4

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

Today’s post is in response to 5 Minute Friday’s word of the week.

All scripture links are from BibleGateway.com

Prophesy Fulfilled

I have always simply accepted the profecies of Jesus as true and that was that. For some reason I decided to do some research and what I found was astounding. Take a look at these figures:

The chances of 1 person fulfilling 8 prophecies – 1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000. 1 person fulfilling 48 prophecies – 1 chance in 10 to the 157th power. 1 person fulfilling 300+ prophecies – Only Jesus! (from Biblical Prophesies Fulfilled by Jesus)

Is that amazing or what?  BTW that long number with all the zeros is a quintillion.  10 to the 157th power… is one and one-half+ googols or 157 zero’s after the 10.  It’s fun to think about but it definitely becomes mind-boggling, doesn’t it?

There are 8 specific prophecies that are connected to the birth of Jesus.

In the beautiful Christmas Hymn by Charles Wesley, Hark, The Herald Angels Sing (click on the picture to hear the song, are these words:
Throughout this song, and many of the other Christmas hymns, the prophecies are repeated, reminding us that Jesus is who He says He is.

None of this should be mind-boggling.  It is what it is.  God’s Word is the truth.  Yet, there are millions who are still in the darkness.  Who believe only what they want to believe.  Who limit the beauty of this season to what’s going to be under the tree.

Let’s be different.  Let’s quit thinking and focusing on what we’re going to get and move on to what are we going to give.  Will you be the one to share the Story for the first time?  Will you be the one that shines light into the darkness?  Will you be the one, like Mary, who was called blessed because she believed? (Luke 1:45)

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

All scripture links are from BibleGateway.com.

The Last of the Old Testament Prophets


One of my favorite parts of the Christmas Story is that of two people who waited patiently for the Messiah.  Simeon and Anna were both New Testament witnesses to the Christ Child. Their stories are as follows (from the NIV, Luke 2):

25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. 26 It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. 27 Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, 28 Simeon took him in his arms and praised God…

Luke 2:36–38 There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.

Simeon and Anna were the first to see Him in a public place.  They were the first witnesses to who He really was.  More importantly, they were not afraid to say, to other worshippers in the Temple, who He was.

Simeon and Anna were the last of the Old Testament prophets.  Their entire life purpose was to listen for and to God.  Also, they shared with the other worshippers what they had heard God say in the temple.  They did not sugar-coat the words but spoke clearly and with conviction.

Both of their names point to a strong, long-lasting faith. Simeon means obedient and listening. Anna means gracious, one who gives.

Dr. William Smith in Smith’s Bible Dictionary suggests that she was probably more than a hundred years old when she spoke over Jesus.  (If she was married at approximately 14, lived with her husband for 7 years, and had spent 84 years after that in the temple, then she was at least  105 years old.)  It is possible that Simeon was also quite old.

So, what is in this story for us?  First, Isaiah 40:31 pops into my mind when I think of the words ‘they that wait upon the Lord…’.  In all the years they waited for the Birth neither one gave up on God’s promise and they were rewarded with seeing Him personally. We often wonder when God will finally act on one of His promises or our requests.  Simeon and Anna are a great example of waiting and watching. Second, a life of prayer is important in seeing God’s work. Although the scripture says Anna had lived, prayed, and fasted in the temple since her husband’s death, it does not mean that we have to live in our churches to experience God. He is everywhere! And finally, we can trust that God will follow through on His promises. God will and can do what He says He will.  Our trust and obedience in matters of faith always lead to God’s blessings.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

Life Gifts

During the Christmas season, we are often focused on gifts. Giving and receiving. Let’s look at gifting in a little different way today.

What is the one thing you’re passionate about and do better than anything else?  It could be your life gift.

Ephesians 2:10 tells us that we are God’s creation and that He has specifically given us talents and gifts, that He ‘prepared in advance’, to use for the good of all. Although we want to connect this verse specifically to the Spiritual Gifts of Romans 12:3-8 and 1Corinthians 12: 1-11 it is much more than that.

I think our life gifts include the gift(s) of the Spirit as well as talents, abilities, and skills that are part of what makes us unique.

In Exodus 35:30-35, we are told that God gave two men specific skills and talents for building the temple. They were to teach those who wanted to help with the project these skills. In the 13th Century before Christ, (during the Exodus) He already had a plan and had given people the abilities to carry out that plan. He’s been giving specific, unique gifts to His creation ever since.

Among the life-gifts God gives are many that help the local church function. Talents and abilities such as musical abilities (composing, singing, playing instruments, performing), crafting (painting, building, sewing, designing, needle arts), home skills (cooking, cleaning, arranging, gardening)… There are so many and God wants them used for His glory!

I want to encourage you to not get wrapped up in false humility where these talents are concerned. When we say to ourselves or others that ‘I’m not as good at this or that than ________________’, we are denying what God has given us to use in our worship of Him.  It is good that we recognize the talents of others but we have special gifts, talents, and skills of our own. God wouldn’t have given them if He didn’t expect us to use them.

Your life gifts are needed! Use them!

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie