Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Wednesday's Words - Encouragement from God's Word

(C) Allen Pearson

"The name of the Lord is a strong tower; 
The righteous man runs into it and is safe."

- Proverbs 18:10 

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Sunday's Thought - Father's Day

Used by Permission, GraphicStock
 I always look forward to the warm spring, and occasionally hot, weather which leads up to Father's Day and then the summer every year. For me, it is a time of mixed emotions. I am happy and excited for the winter weather to be gone and the time I spend outside whether in the garden or walking my dog, yet, I am a bit sad as "Father's Day" approaches and my father went to heaven a few years ago.

I didn't inherit my outdoors and gardening skills for my father, though he taught me about lawn maintenance and curb appeal and he was always willing to help me with outdoor work like installing birdhouses on cemented posts, repairing the fence, it was his forte.

However, he taught me to love music and all of its greatness. He often said that  "Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture" playing when I decided it was time to enter the world.  Later he would share music of the Classical Greats like Mozart, Back, Beethoven and Haydn. When I was growing up, he always had some type of music playing around the house.  He loved to listen to the easy listening elevator music, classical music, Southern Gospel, and hymns on albums, cassettes and later CD's.

Dad received a Music Education Degree from Trevecca Nazarene College and used his skills to write many songs, some of which were published, lead choirs, lead congregational singing and sing solos. Whenever something "big" was coming up, like a solo, he would practice for weeks ahead of time. When I grew up and moved away, he would always invite me to hear him sing in the Christmas or Easter Cantatas.

My father was the son of a Nazarene Pastor. He was brought up in a Christian home so he taught these values to me.  These were the greatest gifts my father ever gave me.  We went to church, we prayed together as a family, and read the Bible.  He never waivered in his faith regardless of the situation or what was going on in the world or even the church he attended. Most of all, he wanted to be sure I would make it to heaven when I died so he shared God's Plan of Salvation with me.  As a result, I became a Christian and followed Christ.

One thing I noticed about my Dad over the years, he was always laid back and never let anything bother him. He had a calm spirit which I learned later in life that it had quite a bit to do with his Christian faith.

I am thankful for God's blessing me with a father who loved me enough to share God's Good News with me.

Want to learn more about God's Plan of Salvation?  Please visit "Begin Your Journey to Peace".

Used by Permission, GraphicStock

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word

(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

"Casting all your anxieties on Him,
Because He cares for you."

1 Peter 5:7, ESV

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Sunday's Thought

"Trumpets in Bloom"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
As Bright as the Promises of God

He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded that what He had promised, He was able also to perform.” - Romans 4:20-21

Adoniram Judson was a great missionary. He went to Burma and labored long. He prayed, fasted, and witnessed. But rather than seeing souls come to Jesus, Adoniram Judson was arrested. He was tortured and cast into a vile, filthy, vermin-infested prison.

Later when he was home on furlough, he was asked if the prospects were bright for the conversion of the world. His famous reply was, "As bright, Sirs, as the promises of God!"

Every person in this world can say that. If he knows the Lord Jesus Christ, he is an heir of the kingdom of God; and he can say, “My future is as bright as the promises of God.”

For more from Love Worth Finding and Pastor Adrian Rogers and to learn about salvation, please visit Assurance of Salvation.

Devotion used by written permission of Love Worth Finding.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Today Would Have Been Mother's Birthday!

"Flowers Against the Fence"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

Today would have been my mother's 74th birthday, June 9.  I know she is having a great time in Heaven so I don't wish her to be back here but that doesn't mean that I don't miss her and think of her often.

Since mom was the one who gave me my first digital camera some 18 years or so ago and always encouraged me in my gardening work, I decided to honor her with some of my favorite images from my "Garden Perspectives" work.

"Yellow Coneflower"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

"Sunlight on the Daisy"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

"Brilliant Tulips"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Wednesday's Words - Encouragement from God's Word

(C) Allen Pearson

"So faith comes from
hearing, and hearing
through the word of Christ."

- Romans 10:17

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Sunday's Thought

"Blue Pansy"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

"And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food.

- Genesis 1:29

Even though some people try to deny and ignore it, deep within every person is a craving to seek and to know God. We were given a God-consciousness at our creation; God implanted some of Himself in each and every one of us. That’s why humans are the only creation of God that seeks Him and has an inner need for Him. 

For example, one way we are like God is that we are called to reflect His dominion over the earth. God has all power over creation. He can tell lightning when and where to strike and command the seas to do His will. We have a small part of this power that God gave us to subdue and rule the earth.

Another way we are like God is that we have the capacity to make choices. Unfortunately, because we’re all sinful we have made wrong choices, but sin has not canceled out our capacity to accept or reject God’s commands.

Giving us the gift of choice was a risky and costly decision for God because it cost Christ His life. But it was worthwhile for God because He wants us to choose Him, not be programmed by Him. He loved us, chose us, and saved us, and He wants us to love and choose Him.

The bottom line is you and I were made for God. He wants us to make the choice to accept His Son as our Savior so that we will be with Him forever. If you haven’t done so already, I challenge you to do that today.

Christ paid a high price for our free will. Have you made the choice to accept His love and sacrifice by placing your faith in Him?

To learn more about God's Plan for your life, please visit PowerPoint Ministries with Jack Graham, New Life in Christ.

Devotion used by written permission of PowerPoint Ministries with Jack Graham.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Friday's Foto! A Norfolk Southern Spring at Horseshoe Curve

"A Norfolk Southern Spring at Horseshoe Curve"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
Within the past year or so I've gotten into Railroad Photography.  My interest in railroads is their history and more towards the invention of the diesel engine.

Now, my interest in Railroads and Railroad Photography didn't just spring up overnight. I have had an interest in railroads since I saw my first train as a child.  Not sure which came first, seeing the trains while visiting at my grandmother's house or seeing the trains go through the old town where I grew up.

Either way, it instilled an interest in the fantastic machine which has never left me.  For years, as a child, I had a model railroad which was fun to play with but lost interest in that over the years.

As I grew up and moved away to college and returned to the area after graduation I had gotten away from my interest in trains and railroads.  I was working on a career and had gotten married and moved to an area where the trains were not close by anymore.

The love of trains and railroads returned when I retired and was moving into a new home and heard the train horns in the distance.  Floods of awesome memories returned and I began a journey of railfanning, watching and learning.

My work is available for purchase from my website, Allen Pearson's Photos - Railroad Gallery.  I offer prints, gallery wraps, metal prints and note cards.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Timeless Thursday! The White Clemantis

"White Clematis"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

I know, you're not surprised to see a photograph of a White Clematis. I find the intrinsic detail of the bloom to be an awesome beauty.

Using a macro lens or the macro setting on a point and shoot can provide insight into the awesome world of flowers.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Wednesday's Words - Encouragement from God's Word

(C)  Allen Pearson

"The Lord is my light
and my salvation;
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold
of my life;
of whom shall I be afraid?"

- Psalms 27:1, ESV

Monday, May 29, 2017

Honoring Military Veterans on Memorial Day

(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
Today, I step away from my usual photography and gardening posts to say "THANK YOU! THANK YOU!! THANK YOU!!! THANK YOU!!!! to our US Armed Forces prior and active service members for their awesome work in protecting our freedoms.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Sunday's Thought

(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

"so Christ, having been offered
once to bear the sins of many,
will appear a second time,
not to deal with sin but to save those
who are eagerly waiting for him."

- Hebrews 9:28, ESV

When Christ returns for those eagerly waiting for Him, I will be there in those numbers! Not because I am a perfect nor been a perfect Christian, but because I accepted Him as my Savior and giving my life to Him many years ago.

My parents were devout Christians, so naturally, I was taken to church from the second I was born until I was old enough to make my own decisions.  At the time, being a child, I didn't realize what an awesome blessing my parents gave me by taking me to church and teaching me things about the Christian faith.

I stayed involved in the church voluntarily working in various capacities up until I left for college and then, again, after I returned.  Unfortunately, for a few years, I decided to explore what I thought would be the "fun" things in life.  I found these things to be empty and unfulfilling. Not long after I returned to regular church attendance and involvement in various capacities.

As I grew older, I noticed how God was taking care of life for me. How? God was there in all situations to direct my path to what would be best for me. For decisions in my career, to a decision about marriage, to many other things along life's way.

Not too many years ago, my wife and I went through six years of unbelievable stress and frustrations as our first dog of 12 years passed away, we took care of our ailing parents, an unexpected death of a sibling, and an accident which led to passing away of a parent.  We were taking care of our parents and were working full-time jobs at the same time which became incredibly stressful. "Unbelievable!" was a phrase we used often.

Throughout those stressful years, I noticed a calm peace within me. It was an amazing experience where it never seemed that I was alone during the stress.  Later, I learned that my wife had the same calming experiences along the way too.

We were both amazed and extremely thankful for God's Blessing of being with us during those years of stress, frustrations and loss. He was there at every turn helping us making through life events we'd never experienced and giving us the comfort and peace that passeth all understanding.

A Christian's life is not perfect.  There are struggles, some of them can be beyond belief, but these make you a stronger and better person and God, who knows all, is there for you. You are not necessarily going to be rich, wealthy or well-to-do by accepting Christ and becoming a Christian, However, who knows- that could be God's Plan for you.

Whatever God has planned for you can be found and learned about by accepting Him as your Savior.  I can tell you by experience, it is the best life and a most awesome experience.

To learn more about God's Plan of Salvation, please visit Peace With God.  Will you be there when He returns?

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Wednesday's Words

(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

"Praise God for Today's Blessings!"

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sunday's Thought

(C) Allen Pearson
"The Lord your God is in your midst,
a mighty one who will save;
he will rejoice over you with gladness;
he will quiet you by his love;
he will exult you with loud singing."

- Zephaniah 3:17, ESV

When I found this Scripture, I think it was through YouVersion's (An excellent Bible App) "Verse of the Day," I was overcome with God's Love and the thought of how much He loves me and will take care of me.  Now and forever.

As I look back over the years of my life, I am very thankful for God and His Love and I can see where He has taken care of me whether I was aware of it at the time or not. Also, He has given me a peace and contentment which is overwhelming calming in this day and age of constant barrage of crazy news stories.

I decided to go through several of my Study Bibles and Bible Apps to learn more about this verse. It clearly states how much God loves us- not just me- but all of us.

To understand God's Love for me goes way beyond any comprehension that I could ever muster in my human brain.  I know where I have been and what I have done but God looks passed that and loves me anyway.  Truly, the greatest love story the universe has ever known.

If you would like to know more about God's Love and His Plan of Salvation for mankind, please visit Peace With God,

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Wednesday's Words

(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
"This God-
his way is perfect;
the word of the Lord proves true;
he is a shield for all those who
take refuge in him."

- Psalms 18:30, ESV

Monday, May 15, 2017

"Norfolk Southern at Horseshoe Curve"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

Did you know that nearly everything you own, has taken a railroad trip at one point or another to get to you?  The most efficient way to ship is by rail. Thanks to the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad, the east met the west in May 1869 and traveling became only a few days endeavor instead of a month-long journey.

My passion for railroad and photography are coming together, slowly but surely, to create some exciting images for you.  Please take a look at my Railroad Gallery-

These two images were created at the Horseshoe Curve Historic Landmark, Altoona, PA.

"Entering Horseshoe Curve"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Sunday's Thought - Mother's Day

Used by Permission, GraphicStock

Today is a sad day for me. Nowadays, I stay home on Mother's Day and rest, relax and goof off with my wife and dog.

Understand, it's not that I have bad memories of Mom or don't like Mom or anything negative at all.  Very much the opposite.  My mother did quite a bit to make me the man I am today.  We shared a lot of love and laughter over the years. Throughout my life, I took time to visit with my Mom even after I got married.  She, as well as my mother-in-law, were very important ladies in our lives.

When she passed away in 2011, it was a difficult time. I'd never lost someone that close, like a parent, before.  So many memories of her awesomeness came back and I hold to them tightly. When the Spring arrived, I kept wanting to call Mom and ask her for gardening advice or ask her to come over to help me plant or design the garden.  It was odd not to have her there.

So, I stay home on Mother's Day because I miss my mom incredibly and will shed a few tears more than a few times usually at the most inopportune moment and sometimes even bawl like a baby.  I think of that and realize she was an awesome lady. And, it's really alright for a man to cry in public- if its not, I don't want to know.

Among many and several bazillion things Mom did for me over the years was instilling the a faith in God, Jesus, Christian values, the importance of going to church, Christian friends and their importance, and many other Christian ideas and thoughts which I'm sure have slipped out the back of my mind.

And, you know, she was right.  We don't like admitting that when we are younger and its usually not something we would ever consider possible until we are older.  Even at that, we don't.  We should though.

Anyway, I would not want to live this life without God, without knowing Him or having ever attended church or making a Christian friend.  I am thankful for Mom's influence in this area. At an earlier age, I became a Christian by following the steps and praying a simple prayer as shown in this graphic-

(C) Allen Pearson
More information can be found at Peace With God!

I will miss Mom today and think of her often.  At some point, I will wonder what I would give her as a gift if she were around, She would tell me, "I don't need anything..." I would buy her something anyway and would be sure to say, "I love you Mom! Happy Mother's Day!"

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Wednesday's Words

(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
"Though you have not seen him,
you love him.
Though you do not see him,
you believe in him and rejoice
with joy that is inexpressible
and filled with glory,
obtaining the outcome of your faith,
the salvation of your souls."

- 1 Peter 1:8 - 9, ESV

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Tributes! Dog Photography, Cat Photography

"Tributes Photography"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
Dogs have a way of coming into our lives and making us happy.  They become part of our family.  Companion, Protector, Exercise Buddy, the list can go on and on and on.  My buddy Noah is with me most of the day now that I work in my studio.

Several years ago now, I was working in an office building when I happened to get on an elevator with a fellow dog lover.  Her dogs were very important to her and she never hesitated to share with me their awesomeness.

However, this morning was a little different. When we got off the elevator, she said, "I tried to find you this weekend!" I was surprised since we didn't work together so I wondered what was up. She went on to say, "With my dog's illness progressing, I decided to hire a photographer to capture the beauty of my dogs while I can." An excellent idea, but, why contact me as I was still working in the area of nature photography- for the most part. She continued "the photographer was awful, he had no respect for the dogs and kept making remarks about the marks on the face and so on. I knew, if I could find you, that would not have happened!" She was right- it would NOT have happened as I love dogs and will work to bring the best out of every situation. She stated, "You need to offer a service for people in this situations. Given your love for dogs, it would be great service."  I had a cat too, at the time, and loved him dearly- so I extended the service to cat owners.

That was when my "Tributes Photography" session was born.  "Tributes" is a tribute to the love dogs and cats have provided their humans over the years as the sessions are designed to be for pet parents whose dog or cat has recently been diagnosed with a terminal illness.

What is the difference between a Photography Session and a "Tributes" Photography session?  Not much, I just do my best to drop everything to accommodate the session request and the pricing is different too.  However, some quality work and products.

#dogcancer #catcancer #dogterminalillness #catterminalillness #dogphotography #catphotography

Monday, May 8, 2017

Iris Day! Blue Bearded Iris, "My Grandmother's Favorite"

"My Grandmother's Favorite"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
For Iris Day, I'd like to share a post of the "The Blue Bearded Iris" which was my grandmother's most favorite flavor.  Besides it's intrinsic beauty, I'm not sure why she loved them so much.   Either way, I dedicated this photo to her and presented one in a frame for her birthday many years ago.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Sunday's Thought

Used by Permission, GraphicStock
Resurrection Life
by Rev. Bud Hance

21"For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

2 Corinthians 5:21 (NKJV)

In every sense, Christ was perfectly innocent and sinless. God knew this, yet called upon His only Son to voluntarily assume/take the place of man. It pleased the Father to lay on Jesus the deep sorrows of the evil of man’s sin. Christ endured such great suffering in order to maintain the truth, honor, and justice of God, as if the guilty (man, us) had themselves endured the penalty of the Law.

The whole process of salvation takes its beginning from God. It was because God so loved the world that He sent His Son. It is not that God is estranged (alienated) from man but that man is estranged from God. It is not God who erected the barriers, but man. God’s message, the message which Paul preached, is an appeal from a loving Father to erring and wandering and to estranged children to come home where love is waiting for them.

Men and women are continually trying to change their lives. Many Christians, too, are continually trying to change their lives; but God calls us to experience the exchanged life. Christianity is not a self-improvement program. It is not a reformation project. It is resurrection! It is new life! And it is expressed in terms of a total exchange of identity. Jesus Christ identified Himself with us in our death in order that we might be identified with Him in His resurrection. We give Christ all that we were - spiritually dead, guilty sinners - and Christ gives us all that He is - resurrected life, forgiveness, righteousness, acceptance.

This is the glorious good news of the Gospel. God the Father, made Jesus, Who knew no sin a sin offering for us who knew no righteousness, who were inwardly and outwardly nothing but sin. Had this atonement not been made, all of mankind would be consumed by God’s divine justice. This, by the way, is what sets Christianity apart from all other religions. Becoming a sin offer is a commendation peculiar only to Christ. This truth is more than reason enough, to come to Jesus in full surrender, repentance, love, obedience and worship.

Risen for me, risen for me,

Up from the grave He has risen for me.

Now evermore from death’s sting I am free,

All because Jesus has risen for me. - W.G. Ovens/Gladys Roberts

To learn about God's Plan of Salvation for man please visit Peace With God!

Reprinted and used by permission of Rev. Bud Hance.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Timeless Thursday! Daisy's After the Rain

"Daisy's After the Rain"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
Another perennial which gets my attention, and I absolutely love, is the Shasta Daisy.  In a garden at one of my previous houses, I planted several of these and had one grouping to become a  fabulous plant.  It is definitely a plant which needs to have plenty of sunlight.

The plant which did best received more light than any of the others in the yard. While I thought the others would receive plenty of light, it turned out they get less than part day. An important part of gardening is understanding and noting how much sunlight the garden will receive throughout the day.

If you enjoy gardening, please visit my Garden Perspectives gallery.


Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Wednesday's Words

(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

"I love you, O Lord, 
my strength."

- Psalms 18:1, ESV

Monday, May 1, 2017

Railroads and Photography

(C) Operation LifeSaver

A few months ago, someone was killed while having their photograph taken because they were on the railroad tracks.  Since they heard the train coming, they got out of the way only to step in front of a train going to opposite direction.  As a photographer, with an interest in railroads, I want to share this graphic to remind photographers not to take your clients to railroad tracks to have their photographs taken.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Sunday's Thought

Transformation Starts With a Choice
by Billy Graham

The 12th chapter of Romans says: “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (verses 1, 2).

It says be transformed; be changed. That’s what we need today. Among young and old alike, we need a change—a spiritual change, a moral change. God calls on all of us to make a total surrender to His Son Jesus Christ.

If you want a change in your life, if you want forgiveness and peace and joy that you’ve never known before, God demands total surrender. He becomes the Lord and the ruler of your life.

You’re surrendering all the time. When I fly in an airplane and I sit down in the seat, I’m surrendering to that plane. Nothing I can do about it.

I’ve been operated on several times, and I didn’t negotiate with the doctors. As they took the knives out and put the anesthetic in, I put my full trust in those doctors that they were going to do the right thing.

God said, “I know the plans I have for you, … plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11, NIV). That’s what God says. He’s not here to condemn you. He’s here to bless you and love you and take you into His arms and say, “I forgive you. I’ll change your life. And when you die, you will go to Heaven.”

That’s what God is saying, if you will surrender totally and completely. But you can’t hold anything back.

"Dogwoods in Bloom"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
First, surrender your mind. Now, when you surrender your mind to God, it means not only what we think but how we think. Some think that when you come to Christ, you have to leave your mind behind. Our faith is not irrational. Jesus will stand the inspection of any scientist, mathematician or intellectual in the world.

I read that by the time you reach college age you will have seen more than 200,000 television commercials. Can you believe that? Congress debated what influence advertising was having on children’s behavior. The average 21-year-old has seen 10,000 hours of violent programs. No wonder we have shooting in our schools. Our minds get saturated with violence or swearing or sex or whatever it is. A survey found that 77 percent of all allusions to sex on network television involve sex outside of marriage, and that cheapens love.

The Bible says, “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new” (Ephesians 4:22, 23, NIV). You can be made new.

You see, your mind is more than a computer. In a computer, the programs don’t get stronger the more you use them, but it’s not true with what you see and hear. What is repeated is reinforced in our minds. What we remember influences what we do. The Bible says, “For as [a person thinks] in his heart, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7). What do you think in your heart? What are you really like down inside?

Television also creates a problem or a dilemma and then in 30 minutes neatly resolves the problem, and the viewer enjoys a feeling of release. But that’s not the way it is in real life. In real life, our problems won’t go away rapidly. We’re conditioned to want things immediately, right now: “I want gratification now. I want my way now.”

The Bible says, “Whatsoever things are true and honest and just and pure and lovely, think on these things” (Cf. Philippians 4:8). Is that what you think about? Good things? Or do you think about things you know are not right?

The Bible says, “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind”—your mind—“is stayed on You” (Isaiah 26:3). Get your mind on Christ every day, all day long, because the devil is fighting for your soul.

There are two forces at work inside of you. One is satanic, and one is God. Don’t let the devil corrupt your mind. “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5), the Bible says.

Second, surrender your body. One of the great debates today is who owns the body. Doctors, lawyers, clergy, judges and juries debate the moral, ethical and legal sides of this issue. And the questions surrounding suicide and euthanasia and abortion center on the issues of who owns and controls your body. Who controls your body?

The Bible says if you’re a Christian, your body does not belong to you. It belongs to God. And the Bible also says that it’s God’s temple. Your body is God’s temple, and He dwells in you if you really know Christ (see 1 Corinthians 3:16).

Well, you say, “Billy, what do you think about sex?” I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for sex, and you wouldn’t be either. God created sex. He made us sexual human beings, men and women.
"Purple Clematis"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

The scholar Eugene Kennedy wrote that sex is being used for a whole host of reasons for which it was never intended. And that’s true. There’s no such thing as free sex or free love. There’s a price tag of broken relationships and broken hearts and broken bodies and broken families. God created us as sexual beings. But from the beginning, God planned that the full expression of sex is to be within marriage.

What about you? If you have made a mistake in this area, you can ask God to forgive you and change you and give you power to resist temptation. He’ll do it. The Bible says, “Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers … will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9, 10, NIV). In other words, you can’t go to Heaven unless you get it cleared up. And the only way to get it cleared up is at the cross where the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses from all sin.

Jesus said, “[You] must be born again” (John 3:7). You can start all over with a new life. He’ll forgive all the past and give you power for the future. Your heart can be changed. It’s changed through prayer. It’s changed by reading the Bible. It’s changed by listening to the Holy Spirit.

Everybody is tempted. The devil tempts everybody, every one of us. I’ve been tempted hundreds of times; so have you. Temptation is not sin. It’s when you yield to temptation that it becomes sin. Christ died to give you a new heart and a new desire.

Third, surrender your will. Before Jesus healed or helped people, He would normally say, “Will you? Are you willing?” And I’m asking you, will you surrender to Christ? Will you let Christ dominate your life and be the Lord of your life? Will you? That’s the question He asks. The Scripture says, “Whosoever will, let him come” (see Revelation 22:17).

You say, “Lord, I will receive you into my heart tonight. Forgive me of my past, the things that I’ve done wrong. I want You to give me a new direction in my life. I want You to fill up this empty place in my life.”

Have you ever surrendered yourself unconditionally to Christ? Have you ever given Him your mind and your body and your will? When you come to Christ, that’s just the beginning because you must live for Him. And in living for Him, that means that the dominant feature of your life will be love. Whatever the color of someone’s skin, you love them. You go out of your way to be friends with people of another race. That’s how you love.

I hope that you will say, “I receive Jesus in my heart. I trust Him. I know that I’m going to go to Heaven because of Him. I know my sins are forgiven because of Him, and I’m ready to die for Him.” Will you do that? ©1999 BGEA

Will you surrender to Christ?

Unless otherwise noted, Scripture quotations are taken from The Holy Bible, New King James Version. The Scripture quotations marked NIV are taken from The Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Devotion reprinted and published with permission of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. 

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Annuals to the Rescue

(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
I love a lot of color, a variety of color, in my gardens in the spring and throughout the summer months up to the first frost in the fall.

I like to start the season with Pansies throughout my garden to announce the coming warm weather.  Sometimes, the Pansies from last fall will last through the cold winter season into the Spring.  I replace these with Petunias and Marigolds.

A pattern I like to follow when planting annuals is to purchase as many colors as I can.  When I plant them, I try not to plant the same color next to the same color. This creates a wide colorful garden.

I like to use Dahlias and other Annuals which are a bit more expensive than Petunias to decorate the porch, deck, and highlight the sitting area of my Wildlife Garden.  If you purchase a tall Annual, or a Perennial, and surround it with smaller annuals, you can create an awesome garden.  Try that in a colorful pot as a highlight in the garden.

When you first start a garden with Perennials. you can use Annuals around those plants to bring color in your garden too. Plant Annuals around the Perennials each season until they are their full size and blooming as you want.

As the title of this post says, "Annuals to the Rescue"- add color everywhere.

Before purchasing Annuals, be sure to check the frost date in your area.  Many places will sell them early in the season before the frost date.  Should there be a frost and you do not cover the plants, you might loose them all.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Timeless Thursday! White Clematis at Deck Post

"White Clematis at Deck Post"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

The contrast, maybe clash, of old wood with the White Clematis against it is a very beautiful setting to me.  The old wood seemsto give an excellent contrast to the white color.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Wednesday's Words

(C) Allen Pearson

"For I know the plans I have for you,
declares the Lord,
plans for welfare and not for evil,
to give you a future and a hope."

- Jeremiah 29:11

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Instagram and Photography and Noah and -

Used by Permission, GraphicStock
Social media is what it is and I enjoy using it for different purposes, personally and professionally.

As a photography and writing business owner, it's an excellent way to share my work with many diverse people from many areas of the country and even the world.

Sometimes, though, I can be a bit slow in embracing new technology and new gadgets.  I think it's more that I want to be sure I am getting something I can use, incorporate easily into my workflow, and have good reason to use the technology, device or app.

I say all that to share this, as far as social media, I have gotten into Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Blogger - from The Dog's Paw, Blogger - Lenses in Bloom, Pinterest, YouTube, and Flickr. Now, several months ago, I started using Instagram- from The Dog's Paw.

Instagram - from The Dog's Paw is going to be a bit different.  I will be sharing my photography skills using my Android phone- which is still a work in progress.

If you know me very well, you know I don't like to do what everyone else is doing or does.  I'm kind of a nonconformist.  I don't seek that, it just comes naturally. Having said that, Instagram will be where I share my journeys with Noah and my wife too. You will see photos from all over the place as we head out for vacations, railfanning, nature walks and hikes and just "going for a ride!" It will be a fun ride and I hope you join us.

Please join our adventures by following us on Instagram - from The Dog's Paw! See you there!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sunday's Thought

"Early Spring Skies"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

Sometimes I am just not as brilliant or on top of things as I wish I was. What? Yeah, it seems that I have a lot to learn as I meet people in this universe in which we live. What am I talking and writing about?

A few weeks ago, my wife and I embarked on a cruise which we’d been anticipating for quite a while. It seems that whenever I travel, I overpack. I take too many clothes and too much stuff to do should I have time and so on. So, determined to avoid this, I packed only what I thought I would absolutely need on this trip.

As we travelled to Fort Lauderdale, everything went as planned. It was becoming an awesome experience together as we celebrated 20 years of marriage.

We arrived a day earlier than the cruise was to leave in order to allow time for whatever to happen. It worked well and provided us some “breathing” room for a delay or two.

On the day we were to travel from the hotel to the cruise ship, we met a couple in the hotel lobby breakfast who were excited to be going on their cruise. It wasn’t on our ship or with the Gospel Music Celebration Cruise we had chosen.
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

I noticed the couple seemed to be very happy and cheerful. However, when we shared about our cruise, they seemed to not know what we were talking about or maybe wondered why we would take a trip like this.

As I paid more attention to the lady traveling, I came to the conclusion that she has some sort of cancer diagnosis. Of course, I couldn’t ask her as I did not know her. I determined this by the hat she was wearing- I've seen it way too many times over the years.

We joined them later in the morning on the shuttle from the hotel to the cruise ship. Once again, I noticed that she seemed a bit concerning but was going on a journey with someone she loved.

Later in my journey, my heart ached as I realized she didn’t seem to know God. I don’t judge someone so I don’t know for sure but gathering from some comments and actions, I wondered.

I wish I hadn’t left my Gospel Tracs at home as I could have given her one and I wished that I had said more about God in the brief time we had in meeting on this earth.

I don’t know her diagnosis or what time she has left on this earth, but I do know that with God in her life, she would experience His Awesome Presence in the most difficult of times.

While God doesn’t always choose to heal our physical needs, He does choose to help us through them or will use them to reach others. God isn’t a crutch to help losers that is often portrayed in media but a True Help in many different times of trials.

Do you know God? Have you met His Son Jesus Christ who died on a cross for your sins so that you can have eternal life with Him in Heaven and not in hell for all eternity- which means forever and ever?

If you have not, please follow these steps to doing so- 

(C) Allen Pearson
If you would like to learn more, please visit Peace With God!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Friday's Foto! A Trip to Horseshoe Curve

Railroad Altoona PA
"A Trip to Horseshoe Curve"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
My wife, dog and I headed to Altoona, PA once again this Spring to visit my favorite train watching location which is Horseshoe Curve National Historic Landmark, Altoona, PA.

The day was absolutely perfect!  We arrived around 11 a.m. and stayed until 4 p.m. seeing around 10-15 trains in that time period. The weather was sunny and warm.

If you enjoy watching trains, this is the place to go.  Be sure to visit the RailroadCity website for seasonal operation dates and times, do not use the website found through Google Maps as the times are incorrect. My heart stopped when I found the site and thought it was closed after driving all that distance.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Wednesday's Words

(C) Allen Pearson
"Finally, be strong in the Lord
and in the strength of
his might."

Ephesians 6:10, ESV

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Sunday's Thought

(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

The Resurrection

16 "When the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. 2 And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. 3 And they were saying to one another, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance of the tomb?” 4 And looking up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back—it was very large. 5 And entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, dressed in a white robe, and they were alarmed. 6 And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him."
 - Mark 16:1-6

Today we celebrate Easter, the Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the grave. He was crucified on Good Friday for our sins and rose on Easter. He paid the ultimate price for our sins -death- so that we wouldn't have to if we accepted Him as our Lord and Savior.

Sometimes I have a difficult time believing someone would do that for me.  It's part of my nature to analyze and think about things much further than what I should- in some cases.  This is one of them.

Whenever I question, I chat with a buddy of mine or read something written by Billy Graham, David Jeremiah, Charles Stanley, or Jack Graham. These men have written incredible books and devotions which remind me that we have to have faith! Belief in God and Jesus Christ requires faith. So, I focus on that- keeping Jesus in my mind while many other things try to get my attention.

God's Gift of Salvation is available to everyone and anyone who is willing to accept Him. There is no price, there is no work required or initiation or anything like that- just to have faith. Interested in becoming a Christian and learning more about Him and the life He has for you?  Follow these steps:

Admit that you are a sinner, just like everyone else born into this world, until we  confess to Jesus Christ and ask His forgiveness:

"(23) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
 (24) and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
-Romans 3:23-24, ESV

"(23) For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." -Romans 6:23, ESV

Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ:

(16) "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life." -John 3:16, ESV 

Confess your sins in a prayer to the Lord Jesus Christ:

(9) "because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. "
- Romans 10:9, ESV

(13) For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."  
 - Romans 10:13, ESV

"Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner and do not deserve eternal life. 
I believe You died and rose from the grave to make me a new creation and to prepare me to dwell in your presence forever. 
Jesus, come into my life and take control, 
forgive my sins and save me. I place my trust in You alone
 for my salvation and I accept your free gift of eternal life."


So now what?

If you prayed this prayer with your whole heart and believed what you did, you are now a Christian.  My suggestion is to find a local church and become involved.  Talk to the pastor about this experience and ask him to teach you where to go or what to do next.

If you are not familiar with a local church, a few excellent resources to get you started or who can follow up with you are:

Billy Graham Evangelistic Association

Southern Baptist Convention

Southern Baptist Conservatives

Church of the Nazarene

In Touch Ministries (Charles Stanley)

Turning Point Ministries (David Jeremiah)

PowerPoint Ministries (Jack Graham)

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Wednesday's Words

(C) Allen Pearson
"even as the Son of Man
came not to be served but to serve,
 and to give his life 
as a ransom for many."

- Matthew 20:28, ESV

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Sunday's Thought

"Spring in Walney"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
Today is Palm Sunday.  The day before Easter that begin Holy Week. It is the day Christians remember and celebrate as the day Jesus entered in Jesus entered into Jerusalem as Savior and King.  As he rode a donkey into town, a crowd gathered and laid palm branches and their cloaks across the road.  They shouted "Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!"

This time of year causes much reflection for me.  As I think about Palm Sunday and Easter is all about, I have a hard time understanding why someone would die for me so that I could have eternal life in heaven.
"Spring in Walney"
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved

I've had the blessing of being brought up in the church.  My father was a Minister of Music and my mother say in the choir.  Each of them did many jobs in the church throughout the years. We were there every time the church doors were open. Of course, as a young boy I knew this is what we were supposed to do and really didn't rebel too much from it.

In my early teen years, I began playing the organ for church services.  I loved it and practiced and practiced and should have practiced even more.  As an organist, I was blessed with the ability to play music by ear which made it easier to read the words to the songs and sing along with the congregation and choir specials.  So, the works of those songs repeated much of the truth of the Gospel.

As the words of the hymns and choir specials recounted through my mind, I was constantly reminded of how Christ died on a cruel cross for my sins.  The music played and sung on Palm Sunday was usually more of a "mourning" or "sad" song less celebratory- Easter was definitely a celebration.  Even as I've aged, and am not playing the organ at church, these songs go through my mind as reminders of what Christ did for me-

Ten Thousand Angels 

1 They bound the hands of Jesus 
in the garden where He prayed;
They led Him thro' the streets in shame.
They spat upon the Savior so pure and free from sin;
They said, "Crucify Him; He's to blame."

He could have called ten thousand angels
To destroy the world and set Him free.
He could have called ten thousand angels,
But He died alone, (alone), for you and me.

2 Upon His precious head 
they placed a crown of thorns;
They laughed and said, "Behold the King."
They struck Him and they cursed Him
and mocked His holy name.
All alone He suffered everything. (Chorus)

3 When they nailed Him to the cross,
His mother stood near by;
He said, "Woman, behold thy son!" 
He cried, "I thirst for water," 
but they gave Him none to drink.
Then the sinful work of man was done. (Chorus)

4 To the howling mob He yielded;
He did not for mercy cry.
The cross of shame He took alone.
And when He cried, "It's finished,"
He gave Himself to die;
Salvation's wondrous plan was done. (Chorus)

Author: Ray Overholt, 1980

If you are wondering about the Palm Sunday and Easter season- what it all means or what its all about, be sure to visit a local church this coming Easter to learn more. 

If you would like to learn more about God's Plan of Salvation for man, please visit Peace With God.

#easter, #jesuschrist, #palmsunday, #holyweek, #godsword, #eastersunday, #godssalvation, #salvation,