In the hustle and bustle of the season - slow and remember that it's not about all the presents under the tree...BUT about THE Gift God has given all of us. Peace is a Person. "Make space in the pace for P E A C E" ~Ann Voskamp
Day 16 of Advent: "Go...and deliver the message I have given you." ~Jonah 3:2 "Advent can feel like an advent of crises. A whole string of Jonah-days brazenly begging you to head in the opposite direction, to get away from the dark underb elly of people and agendas and loving the unlovely and loud. Jonah finds a boat and buys a one-way ticket and sails due west, as if a man can ever escape the grace of God. As if finding your ship isn't sometimes more like jumping ship...You aren't equipped for life until you're in need of grace." ~Ann Voskamp
Day 15 of Advent: "How much longer will you waver, hobbling between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him!" 1 Kings 18:21 "Jesus, the Gift, comes to give you freely through His passion what every other god forces you to get through your performance." ~Ann Voskamp
Day 14 of Advent: "The people who walk in darkness will see a great light." ~Isaiah 9:2 "The message of Christmas is that this world's a mess and we can never save ourselves from ourselves and we need a Messiah." ~Ann Voskamp
Day 13 of Advent: "People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart." ~ 1 Samuel 16:7 "You only begin to change your life when you begin to change the way you see...When my priorities aren't the things seen - when my priorities are rather all things unseen - it's only then that my life begins to have substance and weight." ~Ann Voskamp
Day 12 of Advent: "Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God." ~Ruth 1:16 "When we have an agenda for God, we can't see the gifts from God....God comes through mangers. The mundane holds miracles...and every little thing is going to be okay because God is working good through every little thing. Gifts always come out of the unseen and hidden places." ~Ann Voskamp
Day 11 of Advent: "You must leave this scarlet rope hanging from the window." ~Joshua 2:18 "Great faith is the greatest equalizer, the greatest eraser, and the greatest definer...No personal choice that muddied your life can ever trump th e divine choice to wash your life clean...That scarlet cord Rahab threw out the window? That same word in Hebrew means "hope." You think about that as you tie string around Christmas gifts...The scarlet lifeline of Christ." ~Ann Voskamp
Day 10 of Advent: "Oh, that their hearts would be inclined to fear me and keep all my commands always, so that it might go well with them and their children forever!" ~Deuteronomy 5:29 "God knows how we say I do - but don't...God gives the Law - because He wants there to be love...and it's because of Jesus, whose love makes it possible for you to approach a holy God" ~Ann Voskamp
Day 9 of Advent: "You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good." ~Gen. 50:20 "No matter what intends to harm you, God's arms have you...If God can transfigure the greatest evil into the greatest Gift, then He intends to turn whatever you're experiencing now into a gift." ~Ann Voskamp
Day 8 of Advent: "Surely the Lord is in this place, and I wasn't even aware of it!" ~Gen 28:16 "You can feel it in your bones sometimes when you stop for a moment - like life's this stairway that you just never stop climbing, this ladder that goes on forever without end...there are no ladders to climb up, because Christ came down one to get you." ~Ann Voskamp
Day 7 of Advent: "Abraham called that place The Lord Will Provide." ~Gen. 22:14 "You don't need to climb mountains named I Will Perform. You don't need to climb mountains named I Will Produce. Every mountain that every Christian ever faces, the Lord levels with sufficient grace: The Lord Will Provide...He always has a ram in the thicket...He always provides." ~Ann Voskamp
Day 6 of Advent: "God has brought me laughter." ~Gen 21:6 Laugh today - smile and bring joy to someone else today! "Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly." ~G.K. Chesterton. Let go of the weight and laugh.
Day 5 of Advent: I will bless you...and you will be a blessing to others. ~Gen. 12:2 "In the heaviness of your day...God comes to you. The weight of everything melts like thinning snow in the heat of His words: 'I will bless you.'" ~An n Voskamp "Faith is the gift of God. So is the air, but you have to breathe it; so is bread, but you have to eat it; so is water, but you have to drink it." ~D.L. Moody Unwrap His gift of blessing to you today.
So after breakfast she sits at the piano and begins to play. She plays a song that I taught her and if I close my eyes I can see myself as a child playing the same song. She has gotten so good at this song that she could play it with her eyes closed. She knows where each finger goes…where each note is…and what notes come next. What she once struggled with or messed up on the melody…she now knows like the back of her hand. Practice…this is what it does. It makes us better and more comfortable with whatever we are practicing on. I’m practicing my prayer life with God because I want to be in His presence and to be more like Him. I’m practicing how to walk with God daily. I want to know Him and know when He is speaking to me. I want to run to Him when there is a problem instead of running my mouth or thinking I can fix it. I want to pause instead of jump. I want to be able to close my eyes and lean into Him as easy as breath comes into my lungs. SO…in order to c