Sunday, August 19, 2018

Sunday's Thought!

Beach
"Top Sail Beach, North Carolina"
(C) Allen Pearson

I just returned home from a week at the beach. A quiet natural beach, Topsail, NC. It is one of the most beautiful beaches on earth. I was surprised to find the ocean water was blue. Yes, blue. The last time I'd been to a beach on the Atlantic, the water was browner than it was this past week.

Our drive to Topsail, NC, was anything but eventful. We had ridiculous traffic for the first few hours of travel and a few really powerful thunderstorms which caused us to get off the interstate to safety in the later hours of our trip.

"View from the Car Window"
Photo by Charlie Deets on Unsplash
When we got off the interstate to get out of the rain monsoon, we found the roads to be flooded really bad, probably a foot or two. However, we needed to get to safety as it was still raining really hard making it difficult to drive and see where we were going.

We did our best to get to the parking lot of a gas station and quickly realized we needed to change locations as the rains weren't subsiding and the fire hydrants we saw along the road were quickly disappearing. We determined we could get across the street to the other gas station safely if we acted quickly. As we surveyed our surrounds and where we thought the road might begin and began our journey. My wife was driving our Subaru Forester so I was confident we could make it without any trouble and breathing a prayer wasn't out of the question and done with a precise request of "Lord. please get us through safely" and a huge "Thank You LORD!" when He did. However, the situation would have been dangerous if we were in a sedan or smaller vehicle so be wary of flooded roads in vehicles as we saw a few "almost" attempts which would have been dangerous if they proceeded.

Our vacation was really great. It was really quiet. That is after I determined the noise I was hearing was the ocean and not the local traffic as it would have been back home. We went to a few local establishments for dinner, the Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue and Hospital Center, Surf City, NC, the Tiki Water Tour, and the beach several times.

I loved the beach. Noah and I walked it several times. It wasn't crowded and the people were friendly. We had to be aware of the Sea Turtle nests and to stay away from them. Disturbing a nest would be a federal crime. We saw one nest but kept our distance as Noah's hound qualities and traits are always in excellent form. One of the purposes of our trip was to see Sea Turtles born and head to sea. As I walked the beach, I couldn't help but be amazed at the beauty of God's Creation along the seashore. I see it quite often back home near the mountains with all it's trees and green but I don't have the opportunity to see the shores.

The week seemed like a weekend. Not even a long weekend. I guess it's the problem with aging, the days get faster and faster and faster, and well, faster.

Storm
"Lightning Storms"
Photo by Leon Contreras on Unsplash
As we headed home, it was sad to leave the beautiful island of Topsail. I wasn't cut out for the large beaches with all the fun hoopla but the more natural beaches like this one. Our drive wasn't as eventful as the drive down. We had traffic and plenty of it and a few rain storms or thunderstorms but not like the ones on the trip down.

The storms got me to thinking. Life is full of storms. Whether it's weather-related like snow, rain, thunderstorms, tornadoes or the loss of a loved one, a loss of a friend, a loss of a job, a bad car accident and this list can go on and on. In my life, I've been through many storms. Some of them weather-related while others, like losing my family or many health issues or the loss of my brother-in-law and mother-in-law, are sad life events which happen as they do.

Through life's storms, I've noticed that God has been there all along. He's helped, comforted, calmed, and helped me through those rough times. He never failed. He never let me down. He never failed to show up at the right time just when I needed Him. Even without, at the time of the event, asking Him. It's an amazing journey which I wouldn't change for anything.

If you would like to learn more about the Christian life, becoming a Christian, becoming a follower of Jesus, please visit Peace with God.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word

Bible
(C) Allen Pearson

"For while bodily training
is of some value,
godliness is of value
in every way,
as it holds promise
for the present life
and also for the life to come."

- 1 Timothy 4:8, ESV

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Sunday's Thought!

Billy Graham
(C) Billy Graham Evangelistic Association

Has He Made Your Heart New?
by Billy Graham

The Bible gives us this glorious promise: God will give you a new heart. If you will come to Christ and surrender your heart to Him, God says, “I’ll take out the old heart. I’ll put in a new one.” An old heart will not do. He must give you a completely new heart. God doesn’t just patch you up when you come to Him. The Bible says, “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me” (Psalm 51:10).

And in Ezekiel 36:26, the Bible says, “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.”

Would you like to have a new heart? Change the whole direction of your living? Change your whole moral life? Change your affections? Surrender your life to Christ and have Him give you a new heart.

Today’s Prayer

Dear Lord, thank You that You love us so much that You sent Jesus to the cross to pay the price for our sins so that we can be made new—heart, soul and all—for all eternity in and through Him. 
In His Name. 

Amen.

If you would like to learn more about surrendering your life to Christ and having Him give you a new heart, please visit Peace With God.

Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, King James Version. Adapted from “Spiritual Heart Disease,” by Billy Graham, Decision magazine, February 2018.

Devotion used by written permission of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association