Archive for the ‘death’ Category

When we’re asked a question, we can often give elaborate answers which really tell the questioner nothing. So for the following questions I’m looking for single word answers only :

  1. Do you feel you are missing thing in your life?
  2. Are you missing someone in your life?
  3. What do you worry about most?
  4. When did you last do a random act of kindness?
  5. When was the last time you told someone you love them?

Whatever your answers, did you answer honestly or did you give the answers you think you should be giving?

If you didn’t answer honestly, can I suggest you try again, but this time be honest with yourself, because if you are, you might get an insight into the ares of your life you need to change.

oneword

Easter weekend and the associated celebrations are over, so does that mean Easter is over, we can stop celebrating Christ until Christmas comes round again?

We definitely should not stop celebrating Christ just because Easter is over. After all Christ paid for our sins by giving his life, so how can we ever repay him? We will never manage to repay him for giving himself for us, but we can everything Easter is really about is just as true today and everyday, as it was during the celebrations.

 

Seeking solace in his downturned eyes,
such agonising pain betraying,
Hiding heartache through their stifled cries,
with wordless weeping, silent praying,
Beneath the bloodied,
wretched wraith,
faithful friends,
constrained or driven,
keep their vigil,
hold hard to faith,
and hear his whispered word:
Forgiven
by Stephen Pearson

Christ thought of us as he gave his life for us, so let’s make sure we think of him each and every day of the year. Let’s think of others who don’t know Him, and bring them to Him.

Our world is in an awful state at present, but can you imagine what it would be like if Jesus had never been born or if he hadn’t died at Calvary?

John 11:25 (NLT)

Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying.

Maybe I’ve read it somewhere, or someone has told me, but I seem to think I’ve heard that the resurrection of Jesus has been investigated and examined more times that many other events in history.

For years, people have investigated the facts of the resurrection. Now that tells me that people are either  desperate to prove conclusively to the unbelievers that Christ’s resurrection actually happened, or that they are keen to prove us believers that the resurrection was simply a huge hoax.

I don’t know which of these categories of people you fall into, but anything that gives us believers the opportunity to discuss the facts of that first Easter, and tell others why we believe in Christ’s resurrection, has to be positive doesn’t it, as if we don’t talk about the really meaning of Easter, how will the rest of the world know that Christ died at Calvary just so we could be forgiven.

Hank Hanegraaff said:

You see, without resurrection there is no hope. Indeed, without resurrection, there is no Christianity.

How true is that!

If Jesus hadn’t been born; if Jesus hadn’t been crucified; if Jesus hadn’t risen from the grave…just think what sort of state this world would be in now!

Sometimes actions speak louder than any words ever could.

For me, Easter is a true example of that, as any picture of Christ on a cross, says more about God’s love for us than any words ever could.

Ever more than 2000 years on, the cross still has a message for each one of us – It still shows us just how much God loves each of us; so much so that he willingly sacrificed his only son, Jesus, just so we could be forever forgiven.

What words could ever describe Easter better than a picture of Christ on the cross?

The Cross Has Said It All by Matt Redman

The cross has said it all
The cross has said it all
I can’t deny what You have shown
The cross speaks of a God of love
There displayed for all to see
Jesus Christ our only hope
The message of the Father’s heart
Come my children, come on home

As high as the heavens are above the earth
So high is the measure of Your great love
As far as the east is from the west
So far You’ve taken our sins from us

The cross has said it all
The cross has said it all
I never recognized Your touch
Until I met You at the cross
We are fallen, dust to dust
How could You do this for us?
Son of God, shed precious blood
Who can comprehend this love?

How high, how wide, how deep
How high…

If God called you home today, do you think you’d be ready to go?

I guess for many, regardless of when we are ultimately called to be with our Maker, it may always feel just a little bit too soon for us. e.g. Maybe we don’t want to leave our family, maybe there are tasks we still want to achieve, or some other things we want to still do.

I wonder if Jesus felt it was too soon for Him to be going home that first Easter – Whether he wished he could have stayed longer. Even if Jesus would have preferred to have stayed on earth longer, He still willingly went to the cross because he knew it was His time. It was His time to save the world!

Just as when Jesus died that first Easter, it was the ‘right time’ for Him, it will be the ‘right time’ for us when we are called, because it’ll be God who has called us home.

I love the following song, Ready To Go Home, here performed by Morten Harket, which is about being ready to go home to God.

Ready To Go Home

On the street below these walls
Where I used to walk
Now I can barely crawl
All this darkness rising tall

Lord, shine a light for me
I’m waiting to be called

I’m ready to go home
I’m ready to receive
Forgiveness for my sins
I’m ready to begin

Take this river to the sea
Where the delta flows
The tide is washing over me
Take this soul to heaven’s door

Show me where tomorrow lies
I’m waiting to be born

I’m ready to lay down
I’m ready now to sleep
A promise I must keep
I’m ready to go home

So tired, I lay down with these
Memories
I breathe shallow deep inside of me
If time has run its course with me…

I’m ready to go home
I’m ready to receive
Forgiveness for my sins
I’m ready to begin

I’m ready to lay down
I’m ready now to sleep
A promise I must keep
I’m ready to go home

Have you ever wondered whether Jesus was ready to die on that first Easter morning?

I’m sure if we already knew the date and time of our death we would be devastated as that date drew near, we probably wouldn’t want to go yet. Jesus, even though He knew we was going to die at Calvary, carried on willingly, preparing for His death.

Jesus willingly went to the cross because he knew it was His time to change the world forever – It was His time to save the world!

I struggle to comprehend the pain and agony Christ must endured when he was crucified. I also struggle to comprehend how God must have felt as he watched his only son giving up His life, just so the world could be forgiven of every sin.

So for me, Easter is all about sacrifice, the sacrifice that Jesus made for each one of us on the cross when he bled and died, so we can all be forgiven of our sins. I am therefore forever in God’s debt because He gave up His only son to die on the cross, just for us.

So this Easter, as I again feel so inadequate and so unworthy of God’s love, I am still so thankful that God does love me unconditionally and is always by my side guiding me and supporting me through each minute of every day.

Easter is all about “The Cross” and the sacrifice God gave for you and for me – Is this what Easter means to you?

holy-week

We are now into what many around the world call Holy Week. Holy week is the last week of Lent and is when remember the last week of Jesus’ life.

As Easter is one of the most important times in the Christian calendar, many churches will hold various services this week.

Holy Week starts on Palm Sunday, is followed by Holy Tuesday, Holy Wednesday, Maundy Thursday and then Good Friday and Holy Saturday.

 

Today is Palm Sunday, but do you know and understand why Christians celebrate Palm Sunday?

Palm Sunday commemorates the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover. The gospels record the arrival of Jesus riding into the city on a donkey while the crowds spread their cloaks and palm branches on the street and shouted “Hosanna to the Son of David” and “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord” to honour Jesus as their long-awaited Messiah and King.

Jesus rode into the city on a donkey (in those days, a symbol of peace), the crowds paved his way with palm branches (this indicated that a king or dignitary was arriving in victory or triumph) is significant because it fulfills a prophecy spoken by the prophet Zechariah, in Zechariah 9:9.

These days, Palm Sunday is the Sunday before Easter, and marks the beginning of Holy Week, the week of events leading up to Jesus’ death.

 

Matthew 21:9-11 (NIV)

The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”  “Hosannain the highest heaven!”

When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?” The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”

So today, as we celebrate Jesus’ triumphant arrival into Jerusalem, we praise Him and continue to spread His message of eternal love.

In the UK, today is Mother’s Day, so for many today is day to say thank you to our Mum’s for all they have done/do for us, and just generally spoil them for at least today!

For those of us whose mother’s have passed away, the lead up to Mother’s Day with all the adverts on TV can be difficult, nevermind Mother’s Day itself when all around there are people celebrating with their Mums. It can also be a difficult day for those who have wanted children but who for whatever result, have been unable to have children.

A couple of months ago we went to the Liv On concert with Amy Sky, Beth Nielsen Chapman, and Olivia Newton-John. Here’s some of what their website tells us about this project:

The LIV ON Project and CD came to fruition the way many of the best collaborations do…via a series of conversations between friends about what matters most in life: Love, loss, hope and healing.

All three had endured profound, life-altering losses and yet each remained committed to one thing: a desire to transform individual grief into healing via music… for all.

This very special collection of songs will help lift the hearts of others going through their own hardship, whatever the cause.

The songs on the “LIV ON” CD take the listener on a journey of remembrance, toward one of inspiration and hope.

As well, the three mega-stars have created several brand new songs, including the title track, “Live On,” which born of their own exploration into the pain of loss, the growth that follows and eventually, the journey toward renewed joy.

“We found that any time we shared a vulnerable part of us, we felt such an overwhelming feeling of kinship and relief… that we were not alone with our pain. We hope these songs that came from the depths of us, will offer a place of comfort to others.” ~ Olivia Newton-John

I found the words and the music of all the songs presented at the concert very inspiring, so I just wanted to share with you today the title track from the Liv On CD, entitled Live On:

Live On by Amy, Olivia and Beth

I’m waking up this morning
Grateful for the gift of one more day
The light of hope is dawning
It fills my heart and lifts my fears away
Sometimes there’s a miracle just beyond the pain
When you can see the rainbow in the rain

Live on, live on
Brighter skies will come again
Cry the tears you cry and then live on, live on
Love is all we leave when we are gone live on

We’ve shared so much together
Think of all the mountains we have climbed
Sorrow joy and laughter
Woven through the tapestry of time
Even as we’re letting go we will not lose faith
All the precious memories we make

Live on, live on
In the hearts of those we touch
All the dreams inside of us live on, live on
Love is all we leave when we are gone live on

Live on, live on
More than just survive my friend
We learn how to thrive and then live on, live on
Shining like the words inside this song, live on

Love is all we leave when we are gone live on
In every heart of those we touch
In every dream that means so much
Yes I believe that all of us live on