Sunday, December 16, 2012
The tragedy in Newtown Connecticut...The airwaves have been flooded with details, and our hearts flooded with sorrow. What happened is beyond tragic. Such a thing is incomprehensible. Many are trying to make sense of it. But that will never happen. Something this horrific and senseless, simply cannot have sense made of it.
The world we live in is ever darkening. Things like this shooting rampage are evidence of that. It causes people to wonder and question God. But at times like these we must not doubt Him, but rather turn to Him as we need Him now more than ever.
He is a loving Father. And we can turn to Him for comfort. In His loving embrace, we can find peace and refuge. He may not be able to give us the answers and reasons these things happen, but He can give us the reassurance that He is aware of what is going on, and will somehow, some way, make it okay. He can't return those lives taken. But He can fill those empty hearts and arms of the loved ones left behind, with the reassurance their loved ones are with Him and that one day they will be reunited, never to be separated again.
That first Christmas, the world was pretty dark. Jesus entered in to a lost and dim world. But His entrance brought light. And the day will soon come when the Light himself, will return to this lost and dim world. And with that return, there will be peace. And joy. And relief from heartache. He will come and make everything right and well.
Until then, look to Him. Hold on to each other in love and brotherhood. Hold on to Him and His promises. He is on his way.
Just hold on, the Light will come...Again...
Sunday, December 9, 2012
We came across this story and really liked it. It gave us much to think about.
It is a humbling thought, when we stop to consider that Jesus Christ, became a mortal, to show us the way. He came to Earth, and suffered things beyond comprehension, as He made the Atonement complete. He did all that He did so that when it was our turn to come to mortality, that He could come to us. Help us. Lead us. And that when He utters the words, "I understand." He could mean them. Wholly and completely. Because He has been where we are. He has done what we are doing. And in Gethsemane, He felt the very things we would feel, the very way we would feel them. And when we feel lost, He is there to lead and light the way. Because He knows the way. For He is the way.
Believe Him. Trust Him. Follow Him...
He Became Man And Dwelt Among Us
Once upon a time, there was a man who looked upon Christmas as a lot of humbug. He wasn't a scrooge. He was a kind and decent person, generous to his family, upright in all his dealings with other men. But he didn't believe all that stuff about incarnation which churches proclaim at Christmas. And he was too honest to declare that he did.
"I am truly sorry to distress you," he told his wife, who was a faithful churchgoer. "But I simply cannot understand this claim that God became man. It doesn't make any sense to me." On Christmas Eve, his wife and children went to church for the midnight service. He declined to accompany them. "I'd feel like a hypocrite," he explained. "I'd much rather stay at home. But I'll wait up for you."
Shortly after his family drove away in the car, snow began to fall. He went to the window and watched the flurries getting heavier and heavier. "If we must have Christmas," he thought, "It's nice to have a white one." He went back to his chair by the fireside and began to read his newspaper. A few minutes later, he was startled by a thudding sound. It was quickly followed by another, then another. He thought that someone must be throwing snowballs at his living room window.
When he went to the front door to investigate, he found a flock of birds huddled miserably in the snow. They had been caught in the storm, and in a desperate search for shelter had tired to fly through his window.
"I can't let these poor creatures lie there and freeze," he thought. "But how can I help them?" Then he remembered the barn where the children's pony was stabled. It would provide a warm shelter. He put on his coat and galoshes and trampled through the deepening snow to the barn. He opened the doors wide and turned on a light. But the birds didn't come in. "Food will bring them in," he thought. So he hurried back to the house for bread crumbs, which he sprinkled on the snow to make a trail into the barn.
To his dismay, the birds ignored the bread crumbs and continued to flop around helplessly in the snow. He tried shooing them in the barn by walking around and waving his arms. They scattered in every direction--except into the warm, lighted bar. "They find me a strange and terrifying creature," he said to himself. "And I can't think of any way to let them know they can trust me. If only I could be a bird myself for a few minutes, perhaps I could lead them to safety..."
Just at that moment, the church bells began to ring. He stood silently for awhile, listening to the bells pealing the glad tidings of Christmas. Then he sank to his knees in the snow. "Now I do understand," he whispered. "Now I see why you had to do it."
Sunday, December 2, 2012
We read the most tender story the other day. It was about a 4 year old little girl named Meredith. Meredith's dog, named Abbey, died. Meredith was distraught after Abbey's death. Her mom suggested that she write a letter to Heaven, asking that they take good care of Abbey. Here is her letter...
Will you please take special care of our dog, Abbey? She died yesterday and is in Heaven. We miss her very much. We are happy that you let us have her as our dog even though she got sick. I hope that you will play with her. She likes to play with balls, and swim before she got sick. I am sending some pictures of her so that when you see her in Heaven you will know she is our special dog. I really do miss her.
P.S. Mommy wrote the words after Mer told them to her.
Meredith put a bunch of stamps on the envelope (as she told her mom that it would take a lot of stamps to get it to Heaven...). Her mom took her to the post office and allowed her to mail it. A few days later she received a gold package in the mail. Inside was a copy of Mr. Rogers' book "When A Pet Dies," and a letter. The letter read:
I know that you will be happy to know that Abbey arrived safely and soundly in Heaven! Having the pictures you sent to me was such a big help.I recognized Abbey right away.
You know, Meredith, Abbey isn't sick anymore. Her spirit is here with me--just like it stays in your heart--young and running and playing. Abbey loved being your dog, you know...
Thank you for the beautiful letter. Thank your mother for sending it. What a wonderful mother you have! I picked her especially for you.
I send my blessings every day and remember that I love you very much. By the way, I am in Heaven, and wherever there is love.
God, and the special angel who wrote this after God told her the words.
May God bless the kind person who took the time to be an instrument in His hands, to ease the worry and heartache of this young child...And may He bless us to be in tune enough, to be this kind of gift for another in need...
Saturday, December 1, 2012
Jeremy and Simone Martinsen are two of the most amazing people you will ever have the chance to meet. We were blessed to meet them one year at Education Week in Idaho. They captured our hearts. They were married 9 years ago, and we had the honor of being asked to sing at their wedding...
|It was an all out Cinderella and Prince Charming wedding!...|
Jeremy and his adorable wife, Simone are an inspiration to many...but they've started something so inspirational that when we heard about it we wanted to spread the word!...
Jeremy has proven that the best way to overcome personal challenges is to forget yourself and do something for someone else. Just over a month ago, Jeremy and a small group of volunteers founded "Jeremy's Angels." Together, they're changing the world, one orphan, one family, one child, at a time. In only one month they've sent hats and baby shoes to a disabled children's orphanage in Russia. "Trick or Treated" for coins and gathered nearly $800 to help feed orphans in Ecuador. And they've also sent a suitcase full of provisions to bless the lives of families in Laos.
Opportunities just keep falling into their laps. Right now they're gearing up to help make Christmas special for struggling families. They are gathering donations to provide Christmas gifts for a family in Angola who recently lost their mother.
Jeremy and Simone are so incredible, and we feel so blessed to know them! We want to help support them in their amazing cause...From now until Christmas, for every cd you purchase, Heartbound will donate $5.00 in your name to "Jeremy's Angels."
|Last week we sang in Star Valley and had the chance to catch up with Jeremy and Simone...|
"I do things you cannot, you do things I cannot; Together we can do great things"