Ultimate Sacrifice

As we prepare to mark another Memorial Day, I have already heard the phrase “ultimate sacrifice” several times, and will no doubt here it again the rest of this weekend.

Many people did, indeed, make the ultimate sacrifice in giving their very lives in defense of our country, and we should remember them every day –

even beyond Memorial Day!

But this year, a thought has occurred to me that there is one who first made the “ultimate sacrifice” for man –

JESUS CHRIST

While living, Jesus taught the world how to live, and in dying, he taught the world what making the “ultimate sacrifice” really means.

Jesus wasn’t conscripted to die for us – although he was obeying our father in heaven.

Jesus was not ordered into harms way where he could possibly lose his life –

he gladly went and he offered no defense to those who claimed they could save his life.

Am I the only one who thinks it is a sad irony that the same people who claimed to have the power to save his life, also were the ones who sent Jesus to his death?

(perhaps this is a rabbit hole to followed another time?)

Jesus had so much love for man that he did not run

because he knew his dying could save us all.

Many men and women in our modern times chose not to run from harms way because they believed giving their lives could save others.

But just as the death of Jesus made it possible for us to be saved for eternity, others have died for us that has made it possible for us to be free while living in this world.

I find it tragic and sad that there is so much hate in the world – and yet – many have chose to die for us in so many wars that one would think we have so much love in the world that there would be no need for war.

Romans 12:10 Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;

God bless those who have made the “ultimate sacrifice” – including families who have given their loved ones – in the defense of our country.

John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

                                                  What’s in a flag?

I Lift up my eyes: Secret Santa Blog Day

Planting Potatoes:

Not sure who actually wrote this – seems to be a secret santa sort of day around here – but I wanted to share with my friends anyway! :)

Originally posted on The Postmodern Mystic:

I will lift up my eyes to the hills—
From whence comes my help?
My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.
Psalm 121:1-2 (NKJV)

Through the ages people have taken heart in these words; these are wonderful words. In times of trial they remind us where our deliverance is to be found, in times of heartache they lead us to restoration, and in times of sorrow, they lead us to comfort.

So we press on… suck it up… stiff upper lip… All the while crying inside … “Hey, I could use some help over here!”

We may struggle with many things, we may fight demons of many kinds, we might tire and grow weak, yet we know where our help will come from. Even so, there are those times when it seems like help isn’t coming at all; there is no answer to our challenge anywhere…

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Whoa, don’t plant that seed.

Planting Potatoes:

This is a post I really would like my friends to read!

Originally posted on ColorStorm:

I love the analogy of creeping things, hyenas, cobras, and even gardening, against the insidious nature of man. Apologies to gardeners everywhere.

Image result for seeds in the dirt

The covert intentions of scheming, the snickering laughter that borders on the bizarre, the sexual perversity,  the stinging venom, and the planting of bad seeds are quite a package when delivered to your door step. Not all gifts are good, and not all need to be opened. It is perfectly fine to say: ‘no thank you.’

‘Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.’ Every. God the Father is the dispenser of good gifts, and there are no nefarious purposes, as He is pure. There is no doubt nor salacious intention. God gives not as man gives.

It is entirely amusing to hear the complaints that I ‘refuse to…

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When it Storms in May (and You were expecting Sunshine)

Planting Potatoes:

Another good post I would like to share with my friends!

Originally posted on Eyes Wide Open:

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So much in life and how it goes for us seems to depend upon our expectations, and our willingness to be flexible in that arena. I live in Colorado, and the weather here is, to say the least……..unpredictable. (smirk upon my face)

Sometimes I have a pretty bad attitude about it too. Just ask my husband. I often say I would rather live in a warmer climate (year round), possibly near an open body of water (beach and sand), and where I can know what to expect (overall) on a day-to-day basis. A girl can dream, right?

But I know ~ the grass is always just seeming greener when I think that way. Dreams are just dreams, after all. (sad face)

In all honesty, I am quite blessed to live in Colorado when it comes to weather. Most of the time, we have more sunshine days than many other places…

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Daily Devotionals: (May 9th): Prayer in the Midst of Trouble

Planting Potatoes:

I was blessed by these words and would like to share that blessing with all my friends!

Originally posted on thinkGOSPEL blog:

Reading:“Though I walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive me: thou shalt stretch forth thine hand against the wrath of mine enemies, and thy right hand shall save me.”Psalm 138:7

Most blessed Lord, who have again permitted me to approach a throne of grace, shine this day into my heart. Anew may I enter on another day’s duties and trials with a soul calm and peaceful amid all other disquietudes—at peace with You.

I bless You that I can ever “sing of mercy” as well as of “judgment.” Your dealings might have been all in unmixed wrath, but the severest of them are tempered with gracious love. Oh that they may have their designed effect of driving me to the only true rest for the soul, in the bosom of its God! May the breaking of cistern by cistern only endear to me the more…

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Jesus Is Alive!

Like a runner that has come from last place to win a race ~

Like a team that has come from behind to win in the final seconds of a game ~

Like an underdog who has defeated his enemy after a long battle ~

JESUS CHRIST IS ALIVE!

You know the feeling of great joy and elation that comes from having to listen to insult upon insult from an enemy that feels they are in power and having to watch your champion suffer cruelty at the hands of a lesser foe –

then suddenly, your champion rises exalted fulfilling the hope that you felt when it all began?

I like to play chess – not so great at it – but I love to play –

It’s nice to win – to know that after study and practice – I have learned enough to win – but my favorite kind of win is when my opponent thinks he is better than me and won’t stop insulting me because he is so confident that he will win –

then it happens – after an hour of play – sometimes days – the board – empty of almost all of my pieces – becomes so clear to me – and I make one move to win the game – with one of the lowest ranking pieces on the board! 

Do you know that feeling?

Jesus let his enemies feel confident in their own self-importance – he warned them though – but they didn’t listen.

He even asked God to forgive his enemies who were killing him – yes, even the ones who whipped and humiliated him, because he loved them despite of themselves.

Jesus died for us because it was the only way – the highest form of love that can exist in this world.

John 15:13 “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”

I have watched for a week, as I do every year, while the world is fixated on the death – the cross – the suffering and I have been silent – because I don’t like to focus on the death – any more than I would commemorate the day of a friend’s death. Yes, I know God required this suffering and death –

~ made even more painful because God had to turn his back on Jesus

I know that Jesus endured it all as payment for the sins of a world gone bad. No. it could not be avoided – but do we have to be so focused on it?

I can’t even begin to imagine how painful it would be if God turned his back on me! But I can imagine how much he loves me because he was willing to sacrifice something so pure, so innocent, and so full of love so that man, who is mostly devoid of these things, could be saved!

Yes, there have been times in my life when I felt lost and very alone –

but now I know it wasn’t God’s fault ~I  kept myself in a jail cell –

without knowing the key was in my pocket all along! 

Yes I know the cross was necessary – but Jesus ended it when he said

IT IS FINISHED

Oh what joy I feel right now – and every day – to think that not only was Jesus sacrificed – but God is so powerful that he didn’t leave Jesus on that cross – sort of a last snub of the devil!

(of course, the biggest snub of all is yet to come isn’t it?)

Call me an optimist – positive thinker – but I like to skip to the happy ending you know? Kind of like my daughter did when I read stories to her when she was young.

Halleluha – God was satisfied enough to raise Jesus from the tomb and exalt him – so the cross may be a reminder of what he had to bear for our sins – but now –

THE CROSS IS EMPTY – GOD DID NOT LEAVE JESUS ON THE CROSS!

We have victory – the most important victory in the history of the world!

1 Corinthians 15:55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?”

In that victory – we have the redemption of our savior!

Ephesians 1:7  “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;”

Good Friday is our Holy Day for Reflection

Planting Potatoes:

I found deep reflection from this post this morning – I pray others may be blessed in the same way!

Originally posted on VINE AND BRANCH WORLD MINISTRIES.COM:

GOOD FRIDAY OUR HOLY DAY FOR REFLECTION

Today, we as Christians celebrate this day as Good Friday; It is truly OUR HOLY DAY FOR REFLECTION.  For many farmers it is the day for planting their seeds for fruit bearing.  It is truly a very unusual day when you think deeply upon it.  And of course yes, we will ask the question, what is Good Friday?  Good Friday is observed on the Friday before Easter Sunday. On this day Christians commemorate the passion, or suffering, and death on the cross of the Lord, Jesus Christ.

Pastor Davis is spending theses moments before God in prayer, meditation and deep reflections on the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ Pastor Davis is spending theses moments before God in prayer, meditation and deep reflections on the death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ

How will you spend your GOOD FRIDAY?

We at VINE AND BRANCH WORLD MINISTRIES along with millions of BELIEVERS from all around the world will observe this day as…

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