News to Report

Over the last few days I have been working with Tom, my friend and blog administrator, to update the blog site by becoming an affiliate with a few companies whose products will be of interest to those reading it.

For instance, at Christmas time I talked about a couple books that I really enjoyed reading to my kids and now my grandkids. Those were The Selfish Giant, A Tale of Three Trees and The Legend of the Candy Cane.

I also wrote about “mustard seed” faith and I have found a pendant on Amazon that has a mustard seed charm. There is also a really cute mug on DaySpring.

I have become an affiliate with both DaySpring and Amazon. When I mention of something like this in the morning blog you will recognize it because those items will be underlined indicating they are an active link.


Shop Christian gifts, cards, decor, and more!

If you’re interested in having these books and items as your own you can simply click on the link and be taken directly to the appropriate site.

Please understand that it is not my intention to use my blog as a marketing platform. I just want to make you aware of where you can purchase the items I might mention. I have no desire to commercialize the Gospel.

You will notice that we have placed a DaySpring logo on the blog page for your convenience if you would like to see what types of items they carry.

Super Hero Christians

Have you noticed that there are more super heroes than there used to be? When I was a kid we had Superman, Batman, Mighty Mouse and Underdog.

Oh yes the Marvel Comics had their super heroes but it wasn’t something I knew much about. I never aspired to be a super hero. If I read comics it was Archie, Blondie, Porky Pig, or Bugs Bunny.

Did you know there were those who considered themselves “super” men in Jesus day too? They called themselves Pharisees, Sadducees and Rulers of the Temple.

These were the folks who went around correcting every one for the tiniest of infractions of the Law. They followed Jesus, constantly trying to catch Him doing something wrong, so that they could condemn Him and disperse His followers. This is what Jesus said about their super pious and religious ways.

You Pharisees and teachers are show-offs, and you’re in for trouble! You give God a tenth of the spices from your garden, such as mint, dill, and cumin. Yet you neglect the more important matters of the Law, such as justice, mercy, and faithfulness. These are the important things you should have done, though you should not have left the others undone either.” Matthew 23:23 CEV

They criticized Jesus for eating dinner with common people (sinners) and for healing the crippled and the blind. His kindness to a prostitute and a tax collector was despised and ridiculed. His followers were common place; men who owned fishing businesses. The only one of any real stature in society was Luke the physician.

Sad to say, there are still many who think they should be awarded some superior status and  even have letters sewn to their chest and don a cape. There letters might be SSC, Super Spiritual Christian. However, they would meet with the same message from Christ that the rich man, Simon, was given when he invited Jesus to dinner.

Simon invited Him with ulterior motives. He and his associates were always trying to trip Jesus up. A woman of questionable reputation came into the house and she poured expensive perfume on Jesus. The dinner guests began to whisper demeaning words.

Jesus said to the Pharisee, “Simon, I have something to say to you.”

“Teacher, what is it?” Simon replied.

41 Jesus told him, “Two people were in debt to a moneylender. One of them owed him five hundred silver coins, and the other owed him fifty. 42 Since neither of them could pay him back, the moneylender said that they didn’t have to pay him anything. Which one of them will like him more?”

43 Simon answered, “I suppose it would be the one who had owed more and didn’t have to pay it back.”

“You are right,” Jesus said.

44 He turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Have you noticed this woman? When I came into your home, you didn’t give me any water so I could wash my feet. But she has washed my feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. 45 You didn’t greet me with a kiss, but from the time I came in, she has not stopped kissing my feet. 46 You didn’t even pour olive oil on my head, but she has poured expensive perfume on my feet. 47 So I tell you that all her sins are forgiven, and that is why she has shown great love. But anyone who has been forgiven for only a little will show only a little love.”

48 Then Jesus said to the woman, “Your sins are forgiven.” Luke 7:40-48 CEV

We are called to be like Christ not like the Pharisees. Our hearts should be filled with compassion, understanding, love and grace. People don’t need to be condemned for what they’ve done wrong. We all know, full well, when and where we have failed. We have been forgiven much!

Ours is a mission of forgiveness. We are called to walk in love; to treat one another kindly; to encourage and build up; to strengthen and support. We must live “graceful” lives; lives full of grace showing others that we understand it is only by God’s Grace that we have been forgiven.

God raised us up from death when He raised up Christ Jesus. He has given us a place with Christ in the heavens. He did this to show us through all the time to come the great riches of His loving-favor. He has shown us His kindness (grace)  through Christ Jesus.

For by His loving-favor (grace) you have been saved from the punishment of sin through faith. It is not by anything you have done. It is a gift of God. It is not given to you because you worked for it. If you could work for it, you would be proud. 10 We are His work. He has made us to belong to Christ Jesus so we can work for Him. He planned that we should do this.” Ephesians 2:6-10 NLV

If we are to wear any banner on our chest instead of it declaring us to be super heroes I think it would be best that we make it “GG” for God’s Grace!

We will encounter folks each day who have met a religious super saint and have been condemned. Let’s bee a grace giver; let them be changed by God’s love.

What’s on Your Menu

Used to be that Saturday mornings were a time we went out for breakfast. It was nice to get up at a leisurely pace, have some coffee and then head to the café.

In my book, there is nothing better than buttermilk biscuits and sausage gravy!  That’s almost heaven for sure.

I imagine you are probably wondering why I focusing on food today. It has to do with the Scriptures I was reading this morning.

Make your words good—you will be glad you did. 21 Words can bring death or life! Talk too much, and you will eat  everything you say.” Proverbs 18:20-21 CEV

Think about yesterday and the words spoken, were they sweet and light or were they bitter and tart?  David and Solomon both tell us that God’s words are sweet as honey.  There are times that our words need to bring discipline and correction but even then they can taste good if we speak the truth in love.

It is never fun to be corrected. In fact, at the time it is always painful. But if we learn to obey by being corrected, we will do right and live at peace.” Hebrews 12:11 CEV

Words are the food that feed our soul.

We’ve all had those times when we’ve been telling a story, relating an experience and we could feel the anger rising up inside, just like it did when we lived through it the first time. And then there are those that fill our hearts with joy and laughter. It goes without saying, it’s better to focus on the good.

My son, pay attention to what I say. Listen closely to my words. 21 Don’t let them out of your sight. Never stop thinking about them. 22 These words are the secret of life and health to all who discover them. 23 Above all, be careful what you think because your thoughts control your life.” Proverbs 4:20-23 ERV

Words bring health and life and they build the thoughts that control our life.

I find it very interesting that Jesus referred to himself both as the Word and the bread of life. The Word becomes our bread and bread gives life.

The Word (Christ) was in the beginning. The Word was with God. The Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. He made all things. Nothing was made without Him making it. ” John 1:1-3 NLV

“Jesus replied: I am the bread that gives life! No one who comes to me will ever be hungry. No one who has faith in me will ever be thirsty.” John 6:35 CEV

It’s His Word that brings us a banquet of blessings to enjoy.

Before I draw this to a conclusion I want to share with you a few verses from Psalms.

Our Lord, you keep your word  and do everything you say. 14 When someone stumbles or falls, you give a helping hand. 15 Everyone depends on you, and when the time is right,  you provide them with food. 16 By your own hand you satisfy the desires of all who live. 17 Our Lord, everything you do is kind and thoughtful, 18 and you are near to everyone whose prayers are sincere.” Psalm 145:13-18 CEV

God’s Word provides us with the food we need, He desires to satisfy our lives. His Words are the food that will feed us in every circumstance. We will be strengthened by them.

Let’s feast on God’s word today. It’s ok to pig out. It’s low carb, low calorie and delicious!

Wonderful Works of God

Yesterday after telling you about our travels and the roads we take I began to reflect on the beautiful scenery we have seen over the years.

There is a single verse in the Psalm 40 that I want us to look at this morning.

“Many, O Lord my God, are the wonderful works which You have done, and Your thoughts toward us; no one can compare with You! If I should declare and speak of them, they are too many to be numbered.” Psalm 40:5 NKJV

Look at this phrase “many are the wonderful works which You have done”. Think about that for a moment – what WONDERFUL works do you see that He has done? Was it last night’s sunset or this morning’s sunrise? Was it the love and compassion you felt for a stranger who was in need? Or was it the unpretentious love and acceptance of a child? What did you experience just yesterday that you could see was a wonderful work of God in your life?

As I said, I spent time reflecting on the beauty we see on each of our travels, some of the sun rises and mountain ranges are breath taking. To me, they are an example of God’s greatness.

“Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, And for His wonderful works to the children of men!” Psalm 107:8 NJKV

“He has made His wonderful works to be remembered; The Lord is gracious and full of compassion.” Psalm 111:4 NJKV

“O Lord, You are my God. I will exalt You, I will praise Your name, For You have done wonderful things; Your counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.” Isaiah 25:1 NKJV

God is always reaching out to show off for us. He has given us the beauty of creation to display His power and also given us the miracles of life to reveal His character.

I like the verses above because they move our focus from God’s creation to His character. God says His counsellors are faithfulness and truth. The things that are “wonder-full” are the things that have the character of God woven through them; faithfulness, truth, love, forgiveness, peace, gentleness, patience, joy.

As surely as the sun shines each day and the tides roll in at their appointed times God’s love reaches out to us. Each day the faithfulness of God can be seen in the way a hawk soars above and the fish thrive in the waters beneath. The course of nature allows them to break the hold of gravity and the fish to extract oxygen from the water in ways we can’t. It’s been happening that way since the beginning of creation. That’s faithfulness!

We are still alive because the Lord’s faithful love never ends. 23 Every morning he shows it in new ways! You are so very true and loyal!” Lamentations 3:22-23 ERV

The daily miracles we experience are constant reminders that He is there and He loves us.  As we grow confident in the love that God has for us we begin to reflect His character in the same way that the moon reflects the light of the sun. The moon has no light of its own but it does shine brightly in the night.

As we reflect the Father’s love and His wonderful works, we will begin to shine brightly and bring the joy to others.

Where Do Your Plans Lead

We have been visiting friends in Idaho for the last few weeks. Last night we had a wonderful time catching up with several couples at a bar-b-q. It was great!

 

We talked about our children, grandchildren, music, work, health and the Lord. Everyone there we have known for over 20 years. Our lives have taken us different directions but our friendship remains strong. That is truly a treasured gift.

 

We all make plans. Some of those are just for the day ahead while others cover the next week or through the end of the year. For us, we are planning our trip back to Arizona. Whatever our plans, whatever course we set for ourselves, we need to seek God’s direction and guidance.

Trust your work to the Lord, and your plans will work out well…People can plan what they want to do, but it is the Lord who guides their steps...People might throw lots to make a decision, but the answer always comes from the Lord.” Proverbs 16:3, 9, 33

Whether we are traveling the highways and negotiating the freeways or navigating through the locks and channels of large corporations, we can trust the Lord to guide our steps and lead the way.

As we travel I can’t help but think of all those who have traveled these roads before. Those who came on horseback, in covered wagons and those whose only means of transportation were their feet. Looking at the terrain, considering the weather, the elements and the dangers they may have faced causes me to pause. But then thinking of the joy they experienced in seeing new land that no one had ever been to before, the beauty, the grandeur, the vastness of creation, brings an unprovoked smile to my face. We check the Atlas and follow the roads, they followed the dreams of their hearts!

I think  about Abram. At a word from the Lord, he set out for a world unknown. God called him to leave his home and go into a far country.

“The LORD said to Abram:
Leave your country, your family, and your relatives and go to the land that I will show you. 2 I will bless you and make your descendants into a great nation. You will become famous and be a blessing to others. 3 I will bless anyone who blesses you, but I will put a curse on anyone who puts a curse on you. Everyone on earth will be blessed because of you. 4-5 Abram was seventy-five years old when the LORD told him to leave the city of Haran. He obeyed and left with his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, and all the possessions and slaves they had gotten while in Haran.” Genesis 12:1-5 CEV

His obedience birthed a nation. His obedience open the door for Jesus, the Messiah to come. His obedience brought blessing to his life and those who traveled with him.

What road has the Lord asked you to take today? Are you being obedient and bringing blessing to the lives of those around you?   If God gives you a course correction be willing to take it.

Trust the Lord completely, and don’t depend on your own knowledge. With every step you take, think about what he wants, and he will help you go the right way.” Proverbs 3:5-6 ERV

There are new horizons to view, new adventures to experience and new victories to celebrate!

 

 

 

Life’s Lessons Lived Well

Kids all across the country are getting ready to return to school and some already have.

Over 30 years ago, a book written by Robert Fulgham brought attention to the simplicity of doing things right. It was called “All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten“.

We did learn some very important lessons in our early years of education. The importance of listening, sharing, co-operating, washing our hands, saying please and thank you, were just some of these valuable lessons.

Our parents taught us other truths in our early years that molded us and were very beneficial. It’s amazing how many things we do as adults that we were taught as children. We no longer do them because we fear that we may get a whippin’ or because “mom” is still standing there telling us every time but we do them because we know their right.

Look both ways before crossing a street
Brush your teeth before going to bed
Don’t run with scissors
Don’t talk with your mouth full
Chew with your mouth closed
Don’t tattle
Wash your hands after you’ve gone to the bathroom
Say, “Yes Ma’am” “Yes, Sir”
Don’t punch your sister
Pick up your clothes
Feed the dog

All of these things are simple and right but we had to be taught them and now that we do them we are better for it.

You know the same is true with Scripture.

But you must be strong and brave about obeying the commands my servant Moses gave you. If you follow his teachings exactly, you will be successful in everything you do. 8Always remember what is written in that book of law. Speak about that book and study it day and night. Then you can be sure to obey what is written there. If you do this, you will be wise and successful in everything you do. 9Remember, I commanded you to be strong and brave. Don’t be afraid, because the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”Joshua 1:7-9 ERV

Joshua was taking over for Moses, leading over a million Israelites into the Promised Land. Big shoes to fill – he needed wisdom and courage. This was his instruction from the Lord…remember what you were taught, you will be successful!

Jesus said the core teaching of the Bible, all that Moses and the other prophets said, was found in this instruction.

“36 “Teacher, what is the most important commandment in the Law?”

37 Jesus answered:

Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind. 38 This is the first and most important commandment. 39 The second most important commandment is like this one. And it is, “Love others as much as you love yourself.” 40 All the Law of Moses and the Books of the Prophets are based on these two commandments.” Matthew 23:36-40 CEV

When we love the Lord with all our heart we will naturally and supernaturally love others as well. We learn from His example of love, unconditional love, and we give. We give our time, our possessions, our acceptance, we give our very lives if necessary.

A little nugget that jumped off the page of my Bible this morning was from Psalms.

Help me to guard my words whenever I say something.” Psalm 141:3 CEV

One of the most loving things we can do is to watch our words. Words can encourage or they can destroy. They can compliment or  criticize. Remember the little childhood chant, “sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me”?

But words can hurt – they can devastate. Another one of Mother’s Rules was “if you can’t say anything nice, don’t saying anything at all”. I know that’s what this verse it is telling me.  My words should be kind and loving.

I don’t know which teaching from God’s Word  you’ll be living today but whatever it is, love well!

 

 

His Love Never Fails

Were you able to enjoy a harvest meal of love, patience and joy yesterday? I hope you found a bounty of good things in your garden and we able to feast well.

I have to be honest and tell you that I had a few struggles in the peace and patience categories. Life threw me a few curve balls and I missed with my swing.

No, I’m not going to get into a baseball analogy but I think you know what I mean. I thought things were going along well, I was being loving the way the Lord wanted me to when something unexpected happened and I reacted from my emotions and not from my spirit. I had to be patient and regain my peace. It took a while…a long while.

Then this morning I read these words:

I am surrounded by trouble, but you protect me against my angry enemies. With your own powerful arm you keep me safe. You, Lord, will always treat me with kindness. Your love never fails. You have made us what we are. Don’t give up on us now!” Psalm 138:7-8 CEV

I needed that reminder. His love never fails and He always treats me with kindness.  One translation of this verse says “He perfects that which concerns me”. Thank you Lord.

Our Father knows when we are concerned about things and He goes to work perfecting them. Maybe not the way we would but His ways are perfect and He treats us with kindness.

(I just took a deep breath and exhaled.) Can you feel the comfort in those words – you ALWAYS treat me with kindness! (Another deep breath). Peace, sweet peace, from the Father.

But my reading didn’t stop there. I continued on to Psalm 139. It was amazing how the Lord kept talking to me.

You have looked deep into my heart, Lord, and you know all about me. You know when I am resting or when I am working, and from heaven you discover my thoughts.

You notice everything I do and everywhere I go. Before I even speak a word, you know what I will say, and with your powerful arm  you protect me from every side. I can’t understand all of this!  Such wonderful knowledge is far above me.

Where could I go to escape from your Spirit or from your sight? If I were to climb up to the highest heavens, you would be there. If I were to dig down to the world of the dead you would also be there. Suppose I had wings like the dawning day and flew across the ocean. 10 Even then your powerful arm would guide and protect me. 11 Or suppose I said, “I’ll hide in the dark  until night comes to cover me over.” 12 But you see in the dark because daylight and dark are all the same to you.

13 You are the one who put me together inside my mother’s body, 14 and I praise you because of the wonderful way you created me. Everything you do is marvelous! Of this I have no doubt.

15 Nothing about me is hidden from you! I was secretly woven together deep in the earth below, 16 but with your own eyes you saw my body being formed.
Even before I was born, you had written in your book everything I would do.

17 Your thoughts are far beyond my understanding, much more than I could ever imagine. 18 I try to count your thoughts, but they outnumber the grains of sand on the beach. And when I awake, I will find you nearby.” Psalm 139:1-18 CEV

Everything you do is marvelous!”  Everything…everything God does is marvelous! He was there yesterday when I became impatient and lost my peace. He was there, speaking to my heart. He was there with His powerful arm to protect and guide. 

He was there!

And He’ll be here today too!!  His love never fails! Amen.

 

Enjoy the Harvest

Do you remember early in the Spring when I wrote about planting seeds in our life’s garden?

I trust we have been diligent in watering, pulling weeds and fertilizing those seeds. If you have then I know that you are also experiencing growth and a time of harvest.

A couple of days ago I was with my sister-in-law at her home in Spokane. She has a beautiful garden. The picture above is what we gathered that afternoon; green beans, tomatoes (several kinds), squash and cucumbers. That evening we had a delicious fresh cucumber, tomato and basil salad.

I had to chuckle when I took this picture. She asked me if I was going to use it in my blog. I told her she would have to wait and see.

Of course, I did. It is such a great example for today’s topic.

Some of the seeds I had suggested we plant this Spring were love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness and humility. Each one of these are the character traits that God wants to see developed in our lives.

God’s Spirit makes us loving, happy, peaceful, patient, kind, good, faithful, 23 gentle, and self-controlled. There is no law against behaving in any of these ways. ” Galatians 5:22-23 CEV

Today we’ll have opportunities to be short-tempered, rude,  impatient and unkind. Those ugly weeds are always popping up. Grab a spade, a hoe or a shovel and pull them out.

When that work is done, gather some of the fruit and enjoy your harvest.

“Your love must be real. Hate what is evil. Do only what is good. 10 Love each other in a way that makes you feel close like brothers and sisters. And give each other more honor than you give yourself. 11 As you serve the Lord, work hard and don’t be lazy. Be excited about serving him!” Romans 12:9-11

Look for opportunities to do what is good – go the extra mile and in doing that you will share the love of Jesus in a tangible way.

Be Jesus to someone today! It will have a lasting effect.

Watching Them Grow

Yesterday we were at our grandson’s wedding but of course you knew that.

What a beautiful day!

I know it’s cliché, but they grow up so fast. Sitting there on the patio of the wedding venue Dave and I were recalling the times that he had come to visit, fishing trips, Christmases, making jam in the kitchen – the things that make memories for us as grandparents.

Of course we want to see them grow, mature and have many more exciting moments and make lasting memories.

Isn’t that just like our heavenly Father? His desire is to see us grow up and experience the life that He has designed for us. He wants us to dream big and achieve those dreams.

Let’s pray that our young sons will grow like strong plants and that our daughters will be as lovely as columns in the corner of a palace. 13 May our barns be filled with all kinds of crops. May our fields be covered with sheep by the thousands, 14  and every cow have calves.

Don’t let our city be captured or any of us be taken away, and don’t let cries of sorrow be heard in our streets. 15 Our Lord and our God, you give these blessings to all who worship you.” Psalm 144: 12-15 CEV

The Lord gives blessings to all of us who worship Him. I know I’ve said it before but God is more desirous of our success than we are. He has given us all the resources we need to grow in Him.

Let the wonderful kindness and the understanding that come from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ help you to keep on growing. Praise Jesus now and forever! Amen.” II Peter 3:18 CEV

Do you see what these verses say? It’s by the kindness and understanding that we receive from the Lord that we grow. Yes, it’s possible to learn from trial and error but God’s plan is that we mature and develop by the good things He provides.

Love should always make us tell the truth. Then we will grow in every way and be more like Christ, the head 16 of the body. Christ holds it together and makes all of its parts work perfectly, as it grows and becomes strong because of love.” Ephesians 4:15-16 CEV

It’s by love that we grow perfectly and become stronger.

I can just hear our heavenly Father say, “I remember when you were little and you came to me wanting to share all of your life’s experiences with me. I’m so glad that you’ve grown up and still want to do that.”

At every stage of life God’s word has a message for us.

I write to you, dear children, because your sins are forgiven through Christ.
13 I write to you, fathers, because you know the one who existed from the beginning. I write to you, young people, because you have defeated the Evil One.
14 I write to you, children, because you know the Father. I write to you, fathers,
 because you know the one who existed from the beginning. I write to you, young people, because you are strong. The word of God lives in you, and you have defeated the Evil One.” I John 2:12-14 ERV

Thank you Father for all you have done and are still doing to see that I grow up and become like You.

I Now Pronounce You

Today is a special day for our family. Our oldest grandson is getting married!

Very shortly, Dave and I will be driving to the Seattle area to be a part of this wonderful celebration.

Thinking about what this day will mean to him and his bride I can’t help but reflect on my own wedding and also on the marriage of his parents.

Dave and I are blessed with a rich heritage of marriage. Our parents and grandparents all celebrated at least 50 years of marriage and those marriages ended only because of the death of a spouse. They showed us what it meant to love one another completely, at times sacrificing their own desires and ambitions to put their mate first.

Dave and I had the opportunity to counsel a young couple prior to their marriage. Unbeknown to me, they asked Dave what was his secret to a long and happy marriage. He said it was for both people to willingly give 150%. Then when I came in they asked me the same thing. I said that’s simple, you each have to be willing to give 150%.

They laughed but it’s true. For marriage to be successful it can’t be selfish.

My reflection on marriage this morning not only  has me focusing on the examples of my parents and grandparents but also on the example of Christ.

The Apostle Paul gives a wonderful teaching on marriage in Ephesians 5. He tells us that wives should submit to their husbands as they would to the Lord. Submission is not distasteful. It means to place ourselves under the authority of our husbands and in turn it gives us a covering of protection and well being.

He also tells husbands to love their wives as they love themselves. There’s nothing selfish about that. It is a complete act of giving on the husband’s part. They are to provide for and cherish (treat as valuable) their wives.

And then he wraps it all up with this:

The Scriptures say, “That is why a man will leave his father and mother and join his wife, and the two people will become one.” 32 That secret truth is very important—I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 But each one of you must love his wife as he loves himself. And a wife must respect her husband.” Ephesians 5:31-33 ERV

A loving marriage serves as an example of how Christ loves us. He is the husband who loves us and willing gave all He had for our protection and provision. His love made the ultimate sacrifice and He gave His life for our salvation.  He held back nothing when it came to proving His love for us.

Love does not give up. Love is kind. Love is not jealous. Love does not put itself up as being important. Love has no pride. Love does not do the wrong thing. Love never thinks of itself. Love does not get angry. Love does not remember the suffering that comes from being hurt by someone. Love is not happy with sin. Love is happy with the truth. Love takes everything that comes without giving up. Love believes all things. Love hopes for all things. Love keeps on in all things. Love never comes to an end.” I Corinthians 13:4-8 ERV

These verses written by the Apostle Paul have great meaning to me. I have learned to personalize them in two different ways. First, I replace the word love with the word God because God is love. And then I read them again and substitute my name for the word love.

Each day I am becoming increasingly more aware of how much God truly loves me. That’s life changing!

I want to be more like Him today and when I read this passage with my name inserted it reminds me of how I should be acting towards others. I want to be an imitator of God’s love.

I hope that these words, “I now pronounce you husband and wife” have greater meaning for you today. Whether we are male or female Christ considers us His wife. He has taken responsibility for us; to love us, to nurture and to cherish us.

I will be eternally grateful that He has chosen me to be His bride!