February 15, 2015

Musings – Ray Anderson

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:00 am by sranderson0103

As I sit down to write this week’s article, I can’t seem to come up with a single thought I can develop into the 700 to 800 words needed for it. Instead there a several things swirling around in my head. So here they are.

Prayer—There have been many prayers offered up for Don Patton these last several weeks because of his continuing health issues. And not only for Don, but for many in our midst who are suffering life threatening disease, the infirmities associated with growing old, continuing pain, family troubles, and confinement to rehab centers to name only a few. Isn’t it wonderful that we have a God who listens to us and upon whom we can cast all our cares and burdens (1 Peter 5:7)?  Prayer doesn’t necessarily come to us naturally. We have to learn how to pray. One of Jesus’ disciples said to him, “Teach us how to pray” (Luke 11:1). We have a model prayer found there (Luke 11:2-4) and also in Matthew 6:9-13. I have heard it said that we often teach our young ones how to pray by asking them to remember to PAT: praise, ask and thank. That’s a good beginning. But however we pray, let us make it from the heart not using vain repetitions (Matthew 6:7).

Creation—What a beautiful day we had yesterday! It is truly a blessing to enjoy God’s creation. The beauty of the sky, the warmth of the sun, and the freshness of the breeze through the trees reminds me of the first verse and chorus of This Is My Father’s World:

This is my Father’s world,

and to my listening ears,

all nature sings and ‘round me rings,

the beauty of the spheres.

This is my Father’s world,

I rest me in the thought,

of rocks and trees, of skies and seas,

His hand the wonders wrought.”

We know that God created this world and “It was good” (Genesis 1:31). But, wait until late today and tomorrow. The weather forecast for our state is from snow to freezing rain. Talk about climate change! This rapid change should remind us that the forces of nature are beyond man’s ability to control. Anyone who has lived through a hurricane, tornado, or flood clearly understands their power and how little, if anything, man can do to affect the outcome.

Love—Yesterday was Valentine’s day, and I’m sure we men all remembered to tell our wives how much we love them. Many think of that day as a day for giving candy, flowers, cards, etc. But real love between a man and woman goes far beyond that. Paul wrote to the Ephesians that a man should love his wife as Christ loved the church and gave his life for it and that a man should love is own wife and their own body. That demonstrates a deep abiding love that does not change. It is a love that sacrifices and places his wife before himself.

However, the love more often spoken of in the Bible is the love we should have for one another. Matthew 22:39 teaches us that we should love our neighbor as ourselves. There are many ways of demonstrating that kind of love. Providing help and care in time of need, making calls, sending cards, just making a visit to someone’s home, running errands, and sometime just being a good listener. Not everyone can do all those things, but each of us can do some of them. Paul wrote to the Galatians, and it is very good advice for us too, “And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.” (Galatians 6:9-10)

All Is Vanity—Solomon wrote, “Vanity of vanities, all is vanity.” (Ecclesiastes 1:2)  As we look back over our lives, we might tend to agree with him. Certainly, there are things that we look back to with fondness and they bring us happiness. However, we begin to realize that it is not the material things we have that are of real value, but the relationships we have with one another and with God. These truly are more precious than silver and gold (Proverbs 22:1). We are part of God’s family, his children (1 John 3:1). It is this relationship that will serve us well, now and into eternity.—Amen

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