Celebrate!

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“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!  According to His great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith–more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire–may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.  Though you have not seen Him, you love Him.  Though you do not now see Him, you believe in Him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”  1 Peter 1:3-9

Dear Heavenly Father,  There seems to be a lot of celebrating going on in the month of June–weddings, anniversaries, births, and even Heavenly Home comings.  For all of these we give you thanks and praise for the joy and celebration that takes place in these special events.  You are in our midst celebrating along with us.  As we celebrate may we be reminded of the greater joy and celebration that awaits us at your Son’s return to gather us to Himself and to escort us to Paradise.  Keep us in the one true faith even as trials come to us in this world.  Let us rejoice that “you have overcome the world!”  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen!

April 12 Let’s Party!

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Joshua 5:1-7:15;  Luke 15:1-32;  Psalm 81:1-16;  Proverbs 13:1

People love to party!  To celebrate.  Getting together with friends and family, co-workers and neighbors to honor birthdays, anniversaries, graduations promotions, dedications, retirements, engagements, weddings–and babies!  It’s fun to join in the festivities, to commemorate the occasion with special foods, gifts, toasts and good-natured “roasts.”

Well…we’re not the only ones who like to party.  Angels in heaven rejoice when they learn that wayward son Tom comes to the end of his rope and cries out to God to save him, to forgive him for his rebelliousness and humbles himself as a sinner, forgiven.

“Let’s have a feast and celebrate.  For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.”  Luke 15:23-24

The angels rejoice and shout and sing when loose living Livia learns that her life is a dead end and she longs for a new life in Christ. Holding tight to Livia Jesus says, “Rejoice with me;  I have found my lost sheep.”  Luke  15:6

The angels even throw a late night party when, after many years of godless living, one who is on his deathbed confesses his need for a Savior, repents of his sin and receives the assurance of his faith.

Jesus exclaims, “I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”  Luke 15:10

As believers, let’s take the party to the streets.  Let’s look for the lost and share the Good News of a Savior who loves and forgives and gives second chances.

Let’s celebrate our “being found” for we, too, were once the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the prodigal son.  We have much to be thankful for!  Let’s party–in Jesus’ name!

 Lord God Heavenly Father, we thank and praise you that you are determined to find as many lost sheep, lost coins and prodigals as you can.  That you never give up on the lost ones.  May we, who have been found by you, join in the searching for the lost–to share with them your great love and forgiveness–to bring them to you.  Let us not grow weary of this searching, of this telling, of this reaching out.  May we truly rejoice when yet another name is added to your Book of Life in Heaven.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

“Sing for joy to God our strength;  shout aloud to the God of Jacob!  Begin the music, strike the tambourine,

play the melodious harp and lyre.”  Psalm 81:1-2