Peace & Perspective – Triumph Over Fear

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At times in this world of trouble we need a reminder of where our focus should lie. Please pray today and every day for those enduring religious and ethnic persecution.

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

God's perfect love

“If I could hear Christ praying for me in the next room, I would not fear a million enemies. Yet distance makes no difference. He is praying for me.” Robert McCheyne (1813-1843)

Let each of us remember to pray every day for our brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus.

“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” ~ Ephesians 6:18

Place, Perspective & Peace – If Rocks Could Speak

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In my opinion, if these rocks could speak, they would admonish all who listened to their words to strive for peace.

The title I originally chose and typed for this post was, “Place – Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.” Those who live in the US will realize that the rock in the photograph lies in the area where a Civil War battle was fought. A battle where young boys and men, over 50,000, died or were horribly wounded. The rock lies on the grounds of the Gettysburg Visitor Center and Museum. History of the Battle of Gettysburg can be found here: Battle of Gettysburg

The rocks are haunting to me, creating a heaviness of heart as I gaze at them. It is not a hard stretch of mind to imagine a young man, mortally wounded, lying behind or atop this rock.  According to the National Park Service, this type of rock is very resistant to weathering and probably looks very much the same as it did 150 years ago in July of 1863. A description of the rocks and boulders of Gettysburg can be found here: Geologic Formations of Gettysburg

I also felt a deep sadness as I viewed a wall of solemn faces within the museum. One thousand men, five hundred from each side; all killed, seriously wounded or imprisoned during the Battle of Gettysburg. I’m the mother of two sons, I could only imagine the consuming grief of the thousands of parents, wives and children who lost their dear ones in this terrible war. The wall of 1000 faces, along with more photographs from the museum, can be found here: 1000 Faces

Peace is my theme word for March. Each month, through my daily Bible devotions, I choose a word of character that I hope will become an unshakeable facet of my spirit and life. I also use this theme word in my choice of verses and quotes for the right hand sidebar of this blog.

Those in power around the world do not seem to take heed of the lessons of the past. In fact, rather than seeking peace, it seems there are more wars and rumors of wars just about everywhere. What can we do? The best response is always to pray and have peace within. “Let There Be Peace on Earth,” is a beautiful song by Jill Jackson Miller and Sy Miller. The first line says, “Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me.” That is my hope for my life; I hope it is your hope too.

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.” Matthew 5:9

Peace – Longwood Gardens

Longwood Gardens is a place that brings me a beautiful peace. If you are on the East Coast near Philadelphia try to visit this beautiful conservatory.

I wanted an instrumental song to highlight my Longwood Gardens slide show, but didn’t want to infringe on any copyrights. Youtube and Daniel Otsuka solved the dilemma for me. Through a program on Youtube called audio swap I was able to use one of Mr Otsuka’s beautiful songs to accompany my slide show. I couldn’t have found a better song in my own collection. Enjoy.

Peace – A Blessed Christmas To You

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Below is a dream that a good friend recently posted on Facebook and graciously allowed me to use on my blog for Christmas Day. On this blessed day of celebration let us all remember that love, God’s pure and holy love for us, is why Christ Jesus was born.

“Love is — Many years ago I experienced the golden rings of light. It began as a dream. As I began to awaken from that dream golden waves – rings of light — began expanding before my closed eyes – around the center of my forehead. With each expanding wave I began to sense an ever-increasing feeling of overwhelming love. This love within the emanating rings of light increased in intensity with each expanding golden ring of light until it was too powerful to be fully realized. I began to feel like I was suffocating under it. With tears streaming down my face, I found myself on the floor on my knees beside my bed. I asked God to stop because I couldn’t take anymore. It was the most powerful feeling of love I have ever experienced – Love is God.” W.E.Watts

Peace & Phavorites – The Nativity Story

Tomorrow I will unpack my manger scenes and watch “The Nativity Story” once more. Because it should be on everyone’s “must-see” list of Christmas movies to watch, I’m re-blogging this post.

Re-posted from December 2011

Years ago a friend gave us this gorgeous gift, a beautiful nativity scene carved from wood. Yesterday, after I had placed it upon the windowsill, the sun shone through the windows and backlit the scene with a glorious light.

A favorite Christmas Movie of mine:

Peace – The Cardinal

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On a gorgeous sunny morning last week I noticed there was a nest in my vitex tree. Can you see the lady cardinal incubating her eggs? What is it about a nest that fills our hearts with joy? Perhaps it is the promise of new life waiting to burst out into the world.  For me, it is also a reminder of how very much the Lord God loves us all.

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” Matthew 6:25-34

I’ve included a link to information on Cardinal egg incubation. I think I can expect to hear the peeping of babies next week. Cardinal Incubation Period and Hatching

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Peace – Swinging

I have always loved to swing. When I was young my grandparents would take my sister and I to a park in Newport News, Virginia, overlooking the James River. We would feed the ducks there and also swing on the large swingsets. I must have been three or four years old, and I remembering wondering, in a mixture of excitement and fear, if my Uncle Johnny would push me so high I would fly in a big circle over the top and back round again. I can tell you I held on very tight.

I have a swing in my backyard, not just for my grandsons, it’s there for me too. My husband and I found the perfect board, a piece of driftwood on the banks of the Chesapeake. We brought it home, sanded off any rough edges, and drilled a few holes in the side for the rope. Before we put it into place, I wrote this on the bottom and we both signed our names:

“This piece of driftwood was found on the banks of the Chesapeake in April of 2008, near Northeast, Maryland & Elk Neck State Forest. They (Kathy & Joe) were camping in the Scamp.”

Preparedness and Peace – Psalm 46

The earth is in upheaval: strange weather, earthquakes of large magnitude, tornadoes, hurricanes, massive hail storms, volcanic eruptions, flooding, drought. All these things have been experienced throughout history, yet it seems the frequency and the damaging effects of natural disasters is escalating. It’s easy to feel like this tree that grows alongside the Elk Neck River in Maryland’s Elk Neck State Forest.

When I go through the storms of life. I want to be like this tree and hold fast to the rock of my foundation, my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Psalm 46 sums up so perfectly how I feel.

Psalm 46

    For the director of music. Of the Sons of Korah. According to alamoth.

A song.

1 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. 2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, 3 though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.

4 There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells. 5 God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day. 6Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall; he lifts his voice, the earth melts.

7The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.

8 Come and see what the LORD has done, the desolations he has brought on the earth. 9 He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth. He breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the shields[d] with fire. 10He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;    I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”

11 The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress