Friday, July 13, 2018

To Hear Him Say "Well Done"

It took our God six days to create everything.  From nothing.  Each one of those six days included a specific task and at the end of each day, God stopped, looked at what had been done and "saw that it was good."  The Bible records this multiple times.

There is something very rewarding about looking back, at the end of the day, and resting confidently that the day "was good."  Not because of all I accomplished or even that which I did do was done amazingly - but simply because I was faithful with the tasks that God gave me for that day.  I used the hours wisely and invested my efforts in the ways that were pleasing to my Heavenly father.

This is not always easy - and there are far too many days that my time was either wasted or spent selfishly.  These days are "not good."  And, in this empty-nest phase of life, I often find it easier to coast through my days...forgetting to be purposeful with my time.  But I do want to be the best steward of the days I am given.

This takes prayer.  Prayer at the beginning of the day - asking the Lord for His direction and how He would have me busy myself.  It takes starting the day with time alone with Him rather than "hitting the floor running."  It also takes seeking His advice throughout the day and being sensitive to the Holy Spirit.

Psalm 90:12 "So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom."

Then when each day is done, we can rest confidently that our Heavenly Father is pleased.  And one day, prayerfully, we can hear Him say, "My child, well done."

Matthew 25:21  "His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things.....enter thou into the joy of thy lord."

These are my thoughts for the Five Minute Friday prompt today:  DONE.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Little Grandma

I have one more post about Thailand.  I hope it is not too much.  So many of the lessons learned while on a trip such as the one I had to Thailand are, often, God taught and just for yourself.  Other things can, hopefully, be used as an encouragement to others.  I shared a couple of those things earlier.  However, after the photos last week (which were just for fun), I thought I would wrap up my thoughts today.  The sights, and the sight-seeing, are fun.  The projects completed are rewarding and, certainly, the new friendships made are well-worth the trip.  But the real impact of any missions trip comes from the people.  The personal bonds with local people that you will, most likely, never meet again but with whom you connected after just a few hours of talking.  Talking is actually communicating - but not necessarily through the same language. In many ways, the language barrier forces a deeper type of communicating with body language and facial expressions.

I love seniors.  My heart sings when I have a chance to simply sit and chat with a senior.  To soak in their wisdom and especially, if they are a Christian, to learn from their testimony and the paths that God has led them on.  Its no surprise that meeting this new friend and the hours that we had to fellowship, go to church and then visit over lunch were some of the highlights of my trip.  Her name, in English, is Little Grandma.  She is, indeed, a wisp of a woman - small in stature but huge in heart!

Years ago, after college in Thailand, she was awarded a scholarship and came to the University of Michigan to earn her Masters.  She went on to teach advanced science at Chiang Mai University.  She speaks English but she is very soft spoken and her hearing is quite poor.  I hung on her words but her actions, and her life, spoke more than her words.  She has never been married and Thailand has no type of social security and, so, these days she makes simple banana treats and jello-type desserts that she sells at a stand in the local 7-11.  She also shares her treats (that she could be selling) during the fellowship between Sunday school and church service.  She does not complain and simply lets the love of Jesus shine through her as she loves others.

"By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another."  John 13:35

We are all called upon to love others.  To show Jesus to others by loving them unconditionally.  It is so easy for our past hurts, disappointments or regrets to make us fearful, skeptical or even bitter.  Our busyness keeps us unaware or, often, indifferent to a lost and hurting world around us.  None of us have an excuse.  Wherever God has us right now is where we are to be serving - and to be sharing the love of Christ.

Friday, July 6, 2018

Thailand Photos

The dictionary says a vacation is: "an extended period of recreation, especially one spent away from home or in traveling."  I spent almost two weeks in Thailand this past month.  Definitely away from home - 8,789 miles from home!  It was a missions trip and there was work accomplished but, for sure, we definitely enjoyed time exploring, trying new things (think...riding an elephant) and eating lots and lots of good food!  Although not a typical Five Minute Friday post, with a prompt like "vacation," I thought this was the perfect time to share a few "just for fun" photos!

Everywhere we looked, the landscapes and scenery were beautiful!  We flew into Bangkok but spent most of our time further the mountain area!  The view was breathtaking - and the winding, curve-filled roads were cause for much Dramamine!

The elephant was definitely everywhere!  I know there is a significance in the Buddhist religion but I think it was just a cultural favorite, as well!

Of course, we went to see the elephants.  Every good tourist does!  Bathtime for the elephants was a highlight....for us and for the elephants!!

And, yes, we rode the elephants:)  All about stretching myself - and trying new things!!:)

During the elephant elephant actually painted this picture.  I kid you not!  It was impressive - and I would not have believed it if I had not watched it with my own eyes!

There was also plenty of restaurants to try...good food to tempt us - and even some "old favorites!"

It was lychee fruit season - and lychee was everywhere!!

 This guy was super excited about the World Cup - and wanted us to try his restaurant!!

We were more interested in the shopping!  This was a night market.  You have to have a couple of souvenirs!

 Just a few photos to whet your appetite for Thailand.  If the door ever opens for you to visit, I would say "go!!"  Thank thankful for God allowing me this experience!  Be sure to visit the other FMF writers and see where their vacations have taken them!!