Mar 2 2014


_DSC1397As I write these words western Kentucky is getting showered by ice.  My car is covered with ice, as are the trees in my yard.  None of this is a surprise since this winter storm has been predicted for a number of days.  Up to three-quarters of an inch of ice is expected and then several inches of snow.  I do not mind driving on snow but ice is a different matter.  It can be extremely dangerous to navigate in a car.  It is also something quite treacherous to walk on.  This morning I had to be very careful with my footing.  A few weeks ago I fell on the ice and I did not want to repeat that adventure.  I’m hoping that tomorrow I will be able to photograph the ice.  Ice covered plants and trees can be extremely beautiful.  If I do get out with my camera I will be extra careful.  The key to dealing with ice is to respect it.  If you do not you are likely to pay dire consequences.

_DSC1429That reminds me of something else.  I happen to be reading through the Bible again this year and am covering now the opening chapters of  Deuteronomy. In this section Moses is speaking to the children of Israel who are about to cross into the Promised Land.  He tells them, “Know therefore today, and take it to heart, that the LORD, He is God in heaven above and on earth below; there is no other. So you shall keep His statutes and His commandments which I am giving you today, that it may go well with you and with your children after you, and that you may live long on the land which the LORD your God is giving you for all time.” (4:39-40)

But Moses did not just urge the Israelites to respect God and His commandments that day, he also warned them of the consequences that would come if they did not remain faithful.  Their lack of respect and obedience would cause God to withhold His blessings.  They would stand in danger of losing the land they had just come to possess.  Moses told them “you shall surely perish quickly from the land where you are going over the Jordan to possess it.  You shall not live long on it, but shall be utterly destroyed.” (4:26)  The Israelites were specifically warned not to take on any of the gods they encountered in the land before them.  Moses reminded them that God is a jealous God and would not tolerate any rivals.  After all He had done to deliver them from slavery and bring them to the very verge of the Promised Land God deserved their utmost respect and loyalty.  If they did not give Him this they would certainly pay.

_DSC1250I know this kind of talk makes some people uncomfortable but there is definitely a lesson here we need to be reminded of.  God, as Maker of heaven and earth, and the One who sent His Son to save the world, truly does deserve our utmost respect and loyalty.  When we consider all God has done for us we can come to no other conclusion.  He gives us the freedom, however, to do as we please.  We don’t have to be faithful; we don’t have to show Him our respect.  But when we don’t we too suffer the consequences.  I don’t believe it’s so much that God directly punishes us as it is we reap what we sow.  We pay the price that comes from following false gods (and there are plenty of them out there) and ignoring the paths God has graciously laid out for us for our own good and that of others (not to mention Creation itself).

Just as it would be foolish for me to go out in the ice and pay it no regard or respect, we are incredibly foolish not to give God the respect He is due come sunshine or rain, hail, sleet, or snow.


(The pictures shown here are some I took nearby after another ice storm hit the area last month.)

Mar 14 2010

Little Blessings

Virginia-bluebellsThe church I serve has an excellent preschool program called “Little Blessings.”  We have a three year old group and a four year old group.  This morning the preschool kids came to our church and participated in the service.  It was wonderful!  I absolutely love these kids!

The Little Blessings presentation included singing a song and reciting some poems.  One poem in particular caught my attention.  It’s called “What God Made.”  I’m not sure who wrote it but here are the words:



God made the sun up in the sky;

The little birds to sing and fly;  

The soft green grass and the tall, tall trees;

The bright blue lakes and the still calm seas.

God made the plant; He made the toad.

He made the stone to make a road.

He made the rose, the pup, the bee;

And yet He still had time for me!

Later in the service I preached a sermon called “Teach Your Children Well.”  The main point of this message was that parents, and other family members, need to take an active role in their children’s education.  In Deuteronomy 6 Moses said, “These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts.  Impress them upon your children.  Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.”

It really is important that we teach our children well.  Listening to the preschool kids recite their poem made me even more thankful for their teachers, Ms. Dee and Ms. Debbie.  These small children have already been taught that it is God who has made this beautiful world we live in, along with all its plants and animals.  The poem also helps the children learn that they, too, are part of God’s Creation.  This is a very valuable lesson for many of our environmental problems today are the result of our failure to see that humans are a part of Creation too and that as such we are connected to all the other parts as well.  The last line of the poem not only notes that God made us and cares for us, but also that God cares for the rest of His Creation also.  Today it was the kids who taught us well.  I want to thank the “Little Blessings” for reminding us of these important lessons this morning.  You guys are truly a “big blessing” to me!


(If you were to ask our preschool kids who made the beautiful Virginia Bluebells pictured above, they could tell you.)