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  • My Advice For A Happy Family Day

    Here’s my advice for a Happy Family Day!

    family day advice

    LOOK INTO THE EYES OF SOMEONE YOU LOVE!

    Praying you have an awesome day with the ones you love!

    See you tomorrow for the weekly #soulh2o Devotion.

    In His Grip, Sherry

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  • Who Doesn’t Love A Good Chick Flick?

    She became his wife,
    and he loved her
    ~Genesis 24:67 NIV

    ever after movieGod’s timing for our lives is very interesting to me.

    You see, this weekend; the weekend before Valentine’s Day, I had to prepare a promo video for a retreat I’m speaking at where I’ve been asked to share my talk on The BEST Cinderella Story.

    To get into the Cinderella mindset I decided to watch Drew Barrymore’s movie, Ever After. I love how strong and stubborn Drew shows this fairy tale girl to be, she’s not some pushover princess. In this version, Cinder girl Danielle frees herself from an evil captor and still lands the prince! It’s a really great story that I’m sure you’d love because girls,

    who doesn’t love a good chick flick?

    When I watched the movie, a line struck me when Prince Henry was talking to Leonardo about the age-old question:

    Do you really think there is only one perfect mate?”

    In the course of their discussion, Prince Henry asks,

    “Is everything just chance or are some things meant to be?”

    MY FAVORITE ROMANCE STORY IN THE BIBLE

    I couldn’t help but think about my most favorite romantic love story in the Bible. Genesis 24 tells how intimately involved God was in the connecting of Isaac and Rebekah.  This story is what great chick flicks are made of!

    Isaac is a wealthy, strong, rugged man who worked the land and lived in the desert. Saddened by the death of his mother, Father Abraham sends his servant on a mission to find Isaac a wife. Not really common in our culture, but this servant loved his boss, so he had Isaac’s best interest at heart.  When I reread the story, I could see how God was able to direct Abraham’s servant to the girl of Isaac’s dreams. The Bible says of their relationship that

    “she became his wife, and he loved her.”

    Girls, if you’re wanting that match-made-in-heaven marriage you’d be wise to follow the same process of the servant to help find Isaac a wife, to help you find your Mr. Right.  (You can find my breakdown of his steps in the download below.)

    If you’re in a marriage that is leaving you feeling anything but loved, I encourage you to take the first step the servant followed. Invite God into your decision-making process.

    [tweetthis twitter_handles=”@sherry_stahl”]Ask God to help you discern if there are any steps you could take to help build a stronger, healthier, more loving, #chick-flick of a #marriage![/tweetthis]

    But above all else girls, KNOW… our Daddy loves you and not just on Valentine’s Day!

    Prayer

    Father…I thank-you because You always have my best interest at heart. Trusting You and Your timing, I choose to place my heart in Your hands because I know it’s safe with You. You know my longing to be loved in marriage.  Please fill the empty places of my soul with your love and help me surrender every desire of my heart to You, so You can fill me to OVERflowing. In Jesus Name…Amen

    How To Find Mr Right 4U-FREE Download

    [tweetthis twitter_handles=”@sherry_stahl”]Want to learn How To Find Mr. Right For You? #love #valentinesday #FREE Download [/tweetthis]

    Soul H2OIf you liked the refreshing in this #SoulH2O devotion, you’ll love my latest Soul H2O Devotional book: 40 Thirst Quenching Devotions for Women.

     


    Drawing From The Well

    1. Genesis 24:67
    2. A Quick Study of Genesis 24 with tips on How To Find Mr. Right For You can be downloaded from above.

    WHERE YOU CAN OFTEN FIND ME LINKING UP MY BLOG WITH OR PLACES WHERE MY WRITING HAS BEEN FEATURED

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  • Can I Believe in God And Be Depressed?

    #BellLetsTalkToday’s post is for #BellLetsTalk day.  If you’re a reader from outside of Canada let me explain.  Bell Let’s Talk Day is an initiative that Bell Media took on to help de-stigmatize mental health issues.

    It is radically changing the climate within our country to help see people with mental health issues like people with any other physical sickness. Not to be pitied, insulted or looked-down on, but to be loved, cared-for and helped.  I pray this post helps to initiate conversation, provide resources but most of all set some people free in the body of believers!


    Why am I so depressed?
    Why this turmoil within me?
    Put your hope in God,
    for I will still praise Him,
    my Savior and my God.
    ~Psalm 42:5, 11 & 43:5 HCSB



    When I was a teenager, I was such a happy-go-lucky kind of girl, always seeing the glass half-full. I remember reading through the book of Psalms and thinking

    What’s wrong with David?  This guy really needs to get himself together. One minute he’s singing God’s praises and the next he wants to die. Doesn’t he believe in God?  I mean, his whining is recorded in the Bible? How did this part get in there?

    It wasn’t until I experienced a deeply wounding marriage, ending in a bitter divorce with many legal issues that I understood the depths of despair, depression, and anxiety that David faced. I’ve been decimated emotionally, relationally, financially and spiritually countless times.

    It sometimes feels like when I finally climb out of one pit there’s a crater waiting around the corner, trying to pull me back down.  Add menopause to the mix and you’re walking on thin-ice emotionally! If it weren’t for God’s presence and His Word I really don’t know what I’d do… and I don’t want to find out.  I know it wouldn’t be a pretty picture.

    Psalm 42 and 43 are taken from the pages of David’s journal but after the last decade or so of my life you could’ve sworn they were stolen from my diary. I feel comforted to know that David is someone God himself describes not once, but twice in His Word as “a man after his own heart”; even with all the whining! This portion of Scripture starts off with a song we often sing in church:

    As the deer pants for streams of water,
    so my soul longs after You, O God.
    My soul thirsts for God, the living God.
    Psalm 42:1-2 NIV

    My heart has been crying out this song since it released in the late 1980’s1 but it wasn’t until the latter part of my life (not that I’m near the end yet J ) when I understood David’s back and forth struggle with staying positive. The balance of trusting God as my refuge, redeemer and rescuer when the rough times keep cycling through.

    Why are you downcast, O my soul?
    Why the unease within me?
    Put your hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him
    for the salvation of His presence.
    ~Psalm 42:5 Berean Study Bible

    So, if you’re asking the question…

     Can I Believe in God And Be Depressed?

    Let me answer a resounding, YES!

    The phrase ‘depressed believer’ isn’t just a paradox but often a reality

    [tweetthis]The phrase ‘depressed believer’ isn’t just a paradox but often a reality. #depression #bellletstalk[/tweetthis]

    In case you think maybe just you, me and David were the only people who have ever believed in God and experienced times of being down, discouraged or depressed, let me help you see reality.  With just a quick study I found over a dozen people in the Bible alone who struggled with the same feelings we have. Who makes the list a baker’s dozen should really make you feel like you’re in good company.

    A Baker’s Dozen of Down, Discouraged or Depressed People In The Bible

    1. Leah Genesis 29:31-35
    2. Rachel Genesis 30:1-3, 22-24
    3. Jonah Jonah 4
    4. Job Job 1-3; 10:1, 30:15-17
    5. Naomi Ruth 1-4
    6. David Psalm 42-43
    7. Writer of Ecclesiastes Ecclesiastes 1-3, 12
    8. Hannah 1 Samuel 1
    9. Jeremiah Jeremiah 20:14-18
    10. Elijah 1 Kings 19
    11. Moses Ex 18; Ex 32:32
    12. Paul 2 Corinthians 4:8-16
    13. Jesus Isaiah 53:3; Mark 14:34-36; Luke 22:44

    All of these people believed in God yet struggled with emotions of being down, discouraged or depressed.  Think, even Mother Teresa’s diary revealed times of deep despair.2 I’m NOT saying that God wants you to be depressed or that it’s a good thing.  My point is… the enemy wants you to feel like you’re the only one who struggles like this, like you’re weird, have no faith or that maybe you don’t really believe in God.  You have to let truth remind you that he’s a liar!

    YOU’RE NOT ALONE!

    [tweetthis]YOU’RE NOT ALONE! #BellLetsTalk #mentalhealth #depression [/tweetthis]

    Let me also tell you that the same God who allowed those people to experience hardship and heartbreak, is the same God who carried them into victory.  God has done the same for me and He wants to do the same for you! God doesn’t want to leave you where you are.  He has so much more for you! David wrote of his emotional struggles yes, but he also wrote about the joy of the Lord.

    weeping may stay for the night,
    but rejoicing comes in the morning.
    ~Psalm 30:5  NIV

    God desires to bring us all THROUGH our difficult times and replace them with seasons of happiness.  Until then, we have His Word, His presence, and His joy to be our strength!

    RESOURCES TO HELP YOU RISE ABOVE

    Verses of Encouragement ImageTo help you not get stuck in the desert but travel through the feelings of being down, discouraged or depressed I’ve created some resources for you.

    Subscribe to receive a printout of Scriptures to soak in your spirit and refresh your soul.  These are all verses that God has used to lift me above my circumstances and trust Him for greater days ahead…I mean we are promised heaven, aren’t we folks? 🙂

     

    mental health resourcesSince I am often asked for resources to help with depression or other mental health issues, I created a whole page on my site to help you and your loved ones.

    https://sherrystahl.com/mental-health-resources/

    Praying 2019 is a Golden Year of new joy and many blessings for you!

    In His Grip, Sherry

    WHERE YOU CAN OFTEN FIND ME LINKING UP MY BLOG WITH OR PLACES WHERE MY WRITING HAS BEEN FEATURED


    #BellLetsTalk    https://letstalk.bell.ca/en/  


    #Dare2
    Share
    Post in the Comment Section below and bolster the faith of someone else!


    #musicpics
    Here Again (Extended Version) | Live

    Makes Me Feel: PEACE, Comforted knowing God is with me
    Sung By: Elevation Worship
    Website: http://martynystrom.com/

    CD:  Live Recording at a Gathering
    Written By: Marty Nystrom
    © 2018
    Youtube Video – Live Recording: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zfLcdBuB7NY

    #musicpics #retrosong
    As The Deer

    Makes Me Feel: Worshipful, Wanting to get closer to God
    Sung By: Marty Nystrom
    Website: http://martynystrom.com/

    CD:  We Draw Near
    Written By: Marty Nystrom
    © 1984
    Youtube Video With Lyrics: https://youtu.be/a5pZkLWZv-E

    Youtube Video by Marty Nystrom:  https://youtu.be/tdY4Nx0EprI
    Songfacts: https://www.songfacts.com/lyrics/martin-nystrom/as-the-deer



    ENDNOTES

    1. https://youtu.be/a5pZkLWZv-E Youtube Website Accessed: 2019-01-27
    2. http://www.mentalhealthjustice.net/blog/2016/3/14/53sdjv7bzb4g3cdwqw2b97mwi2ppls website accessed: 2019-01-30

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  • Great Friends Make All The Difference!

    Walk
    with the wise
    and become wise;
    associate with fools
    and get in trouble.
    ~Proverbs 13:20 NLT 

    For the past five days, I’ve been in Edmonton, Alberta. I went to help run a Women In Music & Media (WIMM Canada) event with my partner in crime; Hollie Taylor, at the Breakforth One Conference; Canada’s largest… and most amazing, Christian Conference. To say this time was life-changing would be an understatement.

     

    I loved that my cousin’s wife Rachelle (one of my BFF’s) flew in all the way from Texas, so we got to spend time together catching up for almost a week! On Thursday morning I was interviewed for the Why Me? Podcast by Hollie and her co-host, Johnny Rocket. Later that night we all attended the GMA Covenant Awards where I got to cheer on some friends as they accepted awards.

     

    On Friday, Rachelle and I joined hundreds of women at my friend Cathie’s Gather Women’s Event. We were motivated by so many of my inspiring friends who spoke and then got to hear Lisa Bevere too!

     

    Along with the thousands attending Breakforth; I learned in the seminars, grew deeper in my understanding of God’s Word during the main sessions and felt God’s presence like I hadn’t in quite some time during the worship. Our WIMM Canada event was completely encouraging and connected me with more inspirational women.

     

    The Conference and events were incredible but honestly, the best part of this trip was the people I spent time with, especially during an impromptu prayer meeting with friends in a hotel room.

     

    Great friends make all the difference!

     

    The wisdom found in this week’s Scripture is timeless. The people you spend time with will make or break your life.  Lots of versions translate the end of this verse to say a “companion of fools will suffer harm”.  Bad relationships can actually bring on destruction in your life.  Yikes!

    I’ve often heard the saying You’re the average of the five people you surround yourself with1 quoted, but an article I read references studies that prove this isn’t exactly true.  Although the people closest to you do affect you the most, your whole social network determines who you will become. I was shocked to read how research shows if one of your friends becomes obese you have a 45% greater chance to gain weight and even if your friend’s friend becomes obese there is around a 20% greater chance of you adding inches to your waistline. The study also shows the likelihood of you smoking is increased by 61% if your friend smokes or 29% if a friend of your friend smokes. How crazy is that!  Not surprisingly, the study also showed that “happy friends make you happier!”2

     The reality is that who you surround yourself with is paramount to your success in life and I’m not just talking about how much money you make.  If those you spend time with people who are wise, you’ll gain wisdom… if your friends are fools, you’ll end up in dangerous situations that could lead to your harm; just like Rehoboam brought onto the people when he rejected the advice of elders and chose to follow the suggestions of his childhood buddies.3

    Maybe it’s time to take stock of the people in your world? You might realize how blessed you are or recognize your need to make positive changes; keeping in mind that great friends make all the difference!

     

    Prayer

    Father… I thank You for the wisdom in Your Word. People may come up with cleaver new sayings, but they’re just rephrasing truths found in Your book. Help me build a network of people who inspire, encourage, uplift and challenge me to be the best version of myself, so I can keep myself from unnecessary hurt while making a difference in this world for You! In Jesus Name…Amen

     

     

    WHERE YOU CAN OFTEN FIND ME LINKING UP MY BLOG WITH OR PLACES WHERE MY WRITING HAS BEEN FEATURED

     


    Soul H2O BookIf you liked the refreshing in this #SoulH2O devotion, you’ll love my latest Soul H2O Devotional book: 40 Thirst Quenching Devotions for Women.

     

     


    #Dare2
    Share
    Post in the Comment Section below and bolster the faith of someone else 

    Drawing From The Well

    1. Proverbs 13:20
    2. 2 Chronicles 10:6-8
    3. 2 Chronicles 18-19
    4. Proverbs 22:24-25

    ENDNOTES

    1               https://www.businessinsider.com/jim-rohn-youre-the-average-of-the-five-people-you-spend-the-most-time-with-2012-7 Quote by Jim Rohn; Business Insider Website Accessed:  2019-01-27

    2               https://medium.com/the-mission/youre-not-the-average-of-the-five-people-you-surround-yourself-with-f21b817f6e69 Mission Website Accessed:  2019-01-27

    3               2 Chronicles 10

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  • Recognizing Your Ability To Name Things

    Now the LORD God had formed out of the ground 
    all the wild animals and all the birds in the sky. 
    He brought them to the man
    to see what he would name them;
    and whatever the man called each living creature,
    that was its name.
    ~Genesis 2:19 NIV

    As with anything I speak on or write about, I want you to know that I never feel I’ve “arrived”, or that I have this area perfected in my life.  I most often speak or write on topics or Scripture that God is highlighting in my life to help me grow and mature as a believer.  I especially feel this way about today’s devotion.  Its come out of some very challenging circumstances in my life and I’m thankful that until we draw our last breath… God isn’t finished with us yet! 

    Sherry much love blue and gold


    Brandon and Shelby My kidsYears before I became a mom, I picked out names for my kids.

    For a boy, I wanted Brandon because I’d only known one other Brandon, a sweet adorable boy in my Sunday School class. By the time I had a son and given him the name Brandon, the Beverly Hills 90210 series had been released and was flooding our TV sets with the story of Brandon and Brenda Walsh. The name became associated with one of the coolest kids in North America, but it was no longer unique.

    I wanted the name Shelby for a daughter because of a spunky girl that sometimes came out to the youth group I pastored.  Seeing my kids now as grown, young adults I think I named them well.

    Cool would definitely describe my Brandon and spunky is an understatement for my Shelby!

    Today’s verse shows how God gave Adam the ability and authority to name all the animals and birds. Scripture says, “whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name.”

    The reality is that God has given each of us the ability and authority to place names on things.

    Seriously, you are that powerful 🙂  Parents give their children a sense of identity by what they recorded on the birth certificate. Your first or given name helps you identify with who you are personally, and your last name brings a connection with your family identity.

    I wish this was the only way names were placed on people, just a one-time event at birth but sadly that’s never the case. Throughout your life; parents, teachers, bosses or even people in the checkout line are making statements about you; some kind, some loving… some harassing, negative or cruel.  Every word spoken has the potential to place a name on you. Sometimes people aren’t even trying to bring hurt but misguided words, insecurities or past hurt can leave your heart open to receiving names that were never intended for you.

    I want to encourage you that you’re not stuck with a name.

    One day God is going to give each of us a new name1 but before that happens, names can be changed. There are lots of examples in the Bible of people’s names being changed that changed the trajectory of their lives. Today, it takes a lot of work, but you can even have your name legally changed by the government. With work you can change the name label that’s been placed over you by others… or even if you’ve self-labeled.

    I also want to warn you.

    Be careful with your words. Sensitive ears are all around us, often attached to our own heads. As much as possible, talk in a way that uplifts, builds up and honors not using insults, criticism and heckling.  Remember how proverbs teaches that gracious, kind words are like honey; they’re “sweet to the soul”2 and “healing for the body”.3


    Prayer

    Father…I’m thankful you have a special name for me because you know me more than anyone on this earth.  Help me to make You the source of my worth, confidence and identity.  I ask You to bring revelation to where I’ve accepted names you never meant to characterize my life so I can reject and eradicate them from my thoughts. I chose to come in agreement with and commit to speaking the names you place over me. In Jesus Name…Amen

    WHERE YOU CAN OFTEN FIND ME LINKING UP MY BLOG WITH OR PLACES WHERE MY WRITING HAS BEEN FEATURED

    Soul H2OIf you liked the refreshing in this #SoulH2O devotion, you’ll love my latest Soul H2O Devotional book: 40 Thirst Quenching Devotions for Women.

     

     


    #Dare2Share Post in the Comment Section below and bolster the faith of someone else!

     Drawing From The Well

    1. Genesis 2:19
    2. Isaiah 62:2
    3. Psalm 19:14
    4. Ephesians 4:29

    ENDNOTES

    1. Revelations 2:17
    2. Proverbs 16:24 NLT
    3. Proverbs 16:24 ISV

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  • Linkups & Features

    Here’s where you can find where I linkup my blog posts and places that featured my writing.


    YOU CAN OFTEN FIND ME LINKING UP WITH:

    MONDAY Monday Meditations – Laura J. Davis, Soul Survival – Donna Reidland,

    TUESDAY Cheerleaders of Faith #RARaLinkup – Kelly Balarie,

    WEDNESDAYWord Nerd Wednesdays — Liz Giertz, Worth Beyond Rubies

    THURSDAY Heart Encouragement Thursday – Crystal Storms

    “Reflections

     

    FRIDAY Dance With Jesus Linkup – Susan B. MeadGrace and Truth Linkup – Arabah JoyCounting My Blessings – Deb Wolf, Fresh Market Friday – Crystal Twaddell 

    ELLEN’S PICKS– Ellen Graf-Martin 


    WHERE MY BLOG & WRITING IS FEATURED

    ELLEN’S PICKS– Ellen Graf-Martin 

    LIFE LETTER CAFE

    See, Hear, Love TV Show & Blogsite

     

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  • That Voice Behind You

    “Whether you turn to the right or to the left,
    your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying,
    “This is the way; walk in it.”
    ~Isaiah 30:21 NIV

    Last week, Ethan a student from my former Bible College moved into with Todd and I, so he could complete his final internship before Graduation. Talk about making you feel old… he’s younger than my youngest kid, but in the age-range to be my child. Some of his friends are my former classmates’ kids.  It’s such a small world!

    The other night at dinner, we asked Ethan how he ended up at Bible College and his answer gave us goose-bumps.

    Ethan said he felt God calling him to attend Bible College at the end of High School but wasn’t sure why. So, with questions left in his mind he decided to work for a year, then see how he felt.  When the academic year started, he had this sinking feeling like he missed it; he should’ve taken the plunge and started College that September.

    He Heard That Voice

    Meanwhile in Peterborough, during the second week in the semester, a student felt God speaking to him that someone should have been there and wasn’t.  When he shared this with some other students they began to intercede for whoever this person was.

    A few days later, one of those praying students was on social media and saw a post from Ethan saying how he regretted not registering for Master’s College & Seminary this year and was going next year for sure.  The student stirred up all the courage inside, pushed down the fear of looking like a weirdo and contacted Ethan to tell him what they had sensed during prayer that week.  This was all the encouragement Ethan needed. He took that leap of faith and enrolled, starting classes the next week—keep in mind, this student on social media didn’t know Ethan… had never even met him before {Insert Goosebumps}

    How cool is God?

    Ethan’s story is such a great example of what Isaiah was talking about in today’s verse. The Holman Christian Standard Bible, titled this portion of Scripture, The LORD’S Mercy to Israel and it really does show God’s mercy. It seems the Israelites were again wandering from God’s will, unclear of His plan.

    That Voice Behind You

    You can only hear a voice behind you when you’ve gone the wrong way or went too far. It was in this time of course confusion that these directionally challenged people received a comforting promise.  God spoke through the prophet Isaiah assuring them that even when they turned the wrong way, He would still direct their path.  They may have to course correct, but He would surely let them know.

    For all of you who may be like Ethan, wondering if you’ve gone the wrong way… open your ears to hear from God… when you sense his voice, take that leap of faith and follow that little voice behind you saying, “this is the way, walk in it”!

    Prayer

    Father… I’m so thankful for Your leading. I’d be lost without your guiding me. Help me to not be stubborn and go my own way but listen to You, so when I get off-course, as I inevitably will, I’ll hear Your voice behind me… calling me back.  I want to follow wherever You lead.  In Jesus Name…Amen


    Soul H2O BookIf you liked the refreshing in this #SoulH2O devotion, you’ll love my latest Soul H2O Devotional book: 40 Thirst Quenching Devotions for Women.



    #Dare2Share
    Post in the Comment Section below and bolster the faith of someone else! 


    Drawing From The Well

    1. Isaiah 30:21
    2. Proverbs 3:5-6
    3. Proverbs 25:9
    4. Isaiah 42:16

    YOU CAN OFTEN FIND ME LINKING UP WITH:
    MONDAY
     Monday Meditations – Laura J. Davis, Soul Survival – Donna Reidland,

    TUESDAY 
    Cheerleaders of Faith #RARaLinkup – Kelly Balarie,
    WEDNESDAY Coffee For Your Heart – Holley GerthWord Nerd Wednesdays — Liz Giertz
    THURSDAY
     Heart Encouragement Thursday – Crystal Storms
    FRIDAY
     Dance With Jesus Linkup – Susan B. MeadGrace and Truth Linkup – Arabah JoyCounting My Blessings – Deb Wolf, Fresh Market Friday – Crystal Twaddell ELLEN’S PICKS– Ellen Graf-Martin 

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  • How They Missed The Christ in CHRISTmas!

    We despised him and rejected him;
    he endured suffering and pain.
    No one would even look at him--
    we ignored him
    as if he were nothing.
    ~Isaiah 53:3 GNT

    Did you see the Hipster Nativity Set this Christmas?

    hipster nativityEarlier this week, the news reported how it’s the talk of Christmas 2018.

    The camera zoomed in showing the 3 wise men as Amazon Prime Deliverymen on Segways with presents in hand, the shepherd as a young guy missing what’s going on as he’s busy posting on social media with his 100% organic, gluten-free feed-eating cow and sheep in a Christmas sweater sitting by his side.  Next, they showed a man-bun boasting Joseph taking a selfie of himself with Mary posed in a little risqué outfit with her t-shirt off the shoulder, bra-strap and a little more showing.

    Oh ya, baby Jesus was in the solar-paneled manger too, but the newscasters weren’t really talking about Him.

    The discussion surrounded whether or not it was appropriate to have a nativity set with updated “characters”.  One man on the street was interviewed commenting how he felt each generation depicts the nativity with their own cultural relevance or some other hogwash like that. It’s questionable what nativity set that guy’s been putting out each Christmas but ours have always portrayed people in clothing suiting the era when Christ was born with baby Jesus wrapped in swaddling cloths.

    This modern-day version of the nativity wasn’t an issue for me, although I wish they had made Mary a little more modestly dressed, I actually thought it was clever and could be a good conversation starter but what bothered me was how a whole segment of the news could actually be discussing the scene of Jesus’ birth and yet He wasn’t the focus.  In fact, Jesus was barely mentioned.

    They completely missed the Christ in CHRISTmas!

    Other’s Who Can’t See The Forest For The Trees

    For centuries people have been missing the Christ in CHRISTmas.

    Scripture is full of verses talking about the hope of Israel; a coming Messiah, the savior who would bring peace to those who followed Him.  Jewish Rabbis and faithful Hebrew people have studied the Tanakh (Old Testament) and made lists of what they thought the Messiah; the Christ would be like and how they would recognize Him from any other good person. As Christians, we have accepted Jesus (that’s the English version of His name), to be the fulfillment of all the ancient prophecies.

    I’ve also come to understand through reading Joe Amaral’s book, The Story In The Stars how Jesus also fulfilled God’s prophetic power point in the sky: displayed through the constellations God designed at creation; from the virgin woman Virgo to the Aries ram.

    How My Brain Works

    But if your brain works at all like mine, you’ve probably wondered, Why, if Jesus was the Messiah God gave, then why are there Jewish people today still searching for the Christ?  So, were we wrong or did they miss their Messiah when He came… and why did they?  As you can see, I was probably one of those toddlers who drove their parents’ crazy asking, “But Why?” The Bible does teach that when Jesus was born; as those original style nativity sets depict, lived on the earth as a carpenter and then became a miracle-working minister many Jewish people and Priests did follow Him1, but not all.

    I could never understand how Hebrew people today weren’t able to connect-the-dots left in the Old Testament to ascertain the truth of Jesus’ identity, that was until my friend shared this YouTube video called The Forbidden Chapter in the Tanakh where a young Jewish guy in Israel explains how after Jesus lived, the Rabbi’s took Isaiah 53 out of the Scripture listing, read by Jewish people.  This portion of Scripture is the prophet Isaiah’s most detailed record about the coming Saviour.

    For the first time in my life,

    I understood how Jewish people could miss Jesus being the Christ of CHRISTmas.

    As I watched the video (shown below), my faith of Jesus as Lord and savior of my life was strengthened.

    At the same time, this news brought on such a deep sense of sadness to recognize how millions of Jewish people for over two centuries have missed out on knowing Jesus as I do because their eyes have been blinded from the truth.

    It brings my mind back to the news report on The Hipster Nativity and how people are still blinded from the truth of who Jesus is today.  We can be so distracted by all our stuff the wise men/delivery guys bring, missing Jesus right in front of our eyes like the shepherd or focused on ourselves in this selfie generation. Don’t let that be your reality this year.

    Make 2019 different!

    Don’t let the “trappings of this world” trip you up.  Open your eyes and heart to make room for Jesus, so you don’t miss Him this year!

    Prayer

    Father… My heart aches for a world that seems to be blinded to Your Son even when there are signs of Him all around us. Holy Spirit I ask you to remove the blinders from my eyes and help me see Jesus, Emmanuel… God is with me. Jesus You are here, You’re wanting to be involved in my daily life. I open wide my heart to let you in.  You are my Christ, my savior, my Lord: at Christmas, in this new year and always.  In Jesus Name…Amen


    Isaiah 53 Missing

     

    VIDEO OF JEWISH GUY SHOWING JEWISH PEOPLE ISAIAH 53

    “THE FORBIDDEN CHAPTER”

    In the Tanakh (Old Testament for us).


    If you liked the refreshing in this #SoulH2O devotion, you’ll love my latest Soul H2O Devotional book: 40 Thirst Quenching Devotions for Women.

    #Dare2Share
    Post in the Comment Section below and bolster the faith of someone else!

    DRAWING FROM THE WELL

    1. Isaiah 53:3
    2. Acts 6:7
    3. 2 Corinthians 4:4
    4. Jude 1:3

    ENDNOTES

    1.   Acts 2:41, 47; 4:4; 5:14; 6:7 (Key verse is Acts 6:7)

    YOU CAN OFTEN FIND ME LINKING UP WITH:
    MONDAY
     Monday Meditations – Laura J. Davis, Soul Survival – Donna Reidland,

    TUESDAY Cheerleaders of Faith #RARaLinkup – Kelly Balarie,
    WEDNESDAY Coffee For Your Heart – Holley GerthWord Nerd Wednesdays — Liz Giertz
    THURSDAY Heart Encouragement Thursday – Crystal Storms
    FRIDAY Dance With Jesus Linkup – Susan B. MeadGrace and Truth Linkup – Arabah Joy

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  • My Christmas Message For You

    Well, Merry Christmas my friend. I hope you’re having an amazing time with family and friends! I’ve been kind of quiet these days as I’m getting The 2019 Word Awards program up and running and really wanted to connect with you so I thought a video would be a great way!

    My Video Christmas Message For You

    christmas video images

    Talk to you in the New Year!

    Much love
    ~Sherry
    xoxo

     

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  • What Are You Asking For This Christmas?

    Jesus replied,
    “If you only knew the gift God has for you
    and who you are speaking to,
    you would ask me,
    and I would give you living water.”
    ~John 4:10  NLT

    WHAT ARE YOU ASKING FOR THIS CHRISTMAS?

    After coming home from a missions’ trip just four weeks ago, getting into the Christmas gift mindset is a difficult shift.

    People questioning; What are you asking for this Christmas? In a normal year I find it difficult to give people my Christmas wish, but this year is extra-tough. The reality is, I have soooooo much stuff. We all have so much, dare I say… too much stuff. I feel conflicted like Solomon, struggling to make sense of the justice and injustice in our world.  Trying to enjoy what God’s blessed me with and holding ‘things’ loosely. As a family, we’ve decided to cut down the spending this year and I feel good about that. It just seems at this time of year that everyone around is asking for something, but are we asking for the right things from the right person?

    JESUS AND THE SAMARITAN WOMAN

    Today’s verse is taken from a pretty well-known portion of Scripture where Jesus stops in Samaria at the local watering hole; literally a well, not the neighborhood bar.  🙂  Jesus sits down and strikes up a conversation with a woman who has a history of broken relationships.  Jesus asks for a drink of water.  It’s a weird request from a Jewish man to a Samaritan woman since Jews at that time wouldn’t even use the same cups or bowls a Samaritan had used and that men didn’t just go up to unknown women.

    ASKING

    Jesus moves from asking the Samaritan woman for something to reminding this daughter of her value and how God had a gift with her name on the tag; something many people would have assumed the Samaritan woman forfeited with her lifestyle choices. I’m guessing somewhere along the line; this girl believed the lie that she didn’t deserve to ask God for anything. Maybe our Samaritan sister felt unworthy to think God would have something for her? Maybe she felt God let her down, hadn’t answered past prayers and the girl stopped asking?

    Sometimes a lack of asking can be a lack of trust.

    Jesus told this broken girl how she needed to start expecting… to start asking Him for living water. He wanted her to ask for the right thing, from the right source.

    SO, WHAT ARE YOU ASKING FOR?

    Too often we can get sidetracked in North America and ask for things that don’t satisfy our true thirst, and it’s especially true at Christmas time. The holiday to celebrate Jesus is often the busiest time of the year when we spend the least amount of time with Him.

    This year, make your Christmas list, enjoy all God blesses your life with but don’t forget to ask God for the gifts He’s prepared for you.  God has more set aside for your life than you can imagine. He wants you to ask. Don’t let the presents from Him go unopened and unused. Make sure to ask for the right thing, from the right source… God, the giver of all things good has something special for YOU!

    Prayer

    Father…You are so good! Even when I don’t deserve anything you have gifts for me.  I’m so thankful that You want to refresh me, You want to restore me, You want to fill me to overflowing so the effects of my life spill out to others. Help me to see my value, so I can come before You and expect good things. I want to receive all You have for me!  In Jesus Name…Amen


    Soul H2O BookIf you liked the refreshing in this #SoulH2O devotion, you’ll love my latest Soul H2O Devotional book: 40 Thirst Quenching Devotions for Women.

     

    #Dare2Share Post in the Comment Section below and bolster the faith of someone else!


     Drawing From The Well

    1. John 4:10; 7:38
    2. Mathew 7:7-8
    3. James 1:17
    4. Revelations 21:6

    YOU CAN OFTEN FIND ME LINKING UP WITH:
    MONDAY Monday Meditations – Laura J. Davis,
    TUESDAY Cheerleaders of Faith #RARaLinkup – Kelly Balarie,
    WEDNESDAY Coffee For Your Heart – Holley Gerth,
    THURSDAY Heart Encouragement Thursday – Crystal Storms,
    FRIDAY Dance With Jesus Linkup – Susan B. Mead, Grace and Truth Linkup – Arabah Joy, Counting My Blessings – Deb Wolf, Fresh Market Friday – Crystal Twaddell

    Read More