Friday, December 30, 2011

Dare to love LOUD!

The love of God has been poured out in our hearts
by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
Romans 5:5

      What if this next year...2012, the entire Christian community decided they were no longer going to love quietly and in the privacy of their own homes and churches. What if instead, their love got loud...very LOUD? So loud in fact, that the entire world could hear it. What if it made the world turn its head to see what all the comotion was about? What if in every small town, every big city, office, school, orphanage, prison, and home, God stretched out His hand of love through us and loudly touched the people there? What would a love like that sound like? What would it look like? And what would it accomplish in this world? Would you like to find out?

      Join me this new year to share God's love - LOUDLY. "How do we do it?" you ask. Well, in as many different ways as God's unique children can come up with. Our Father is very creative, and He will give us ideas and opportunities. We can start where we are - in our homes, our work places, our schools; and take it everywhere we go. Yes, that means you and I will have to take chances, venture out of our comfort zones and be brave. I know God will use our efforts if we step out and trust Him with the outcome.

      It would be a blessing to me and very encouraging to hear your ideas and what kinds of things you come up with to share God's love. I think others would like to hear also. Let's make 2012 a year to remember, a year filled with the love of God poured out on a lost world.

Link your blog here to give ideas or tell how you shared God's love this week.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

The Manger Heist

by Charlotte Foster
It’s Christmas time. What does that mean?
Time to party, dance and sing?

When hollow gifts are wrapped up tight,
And manger scenes kept out of sight.

As atheist now run the day,
And try to change the words we say.

“Merry Christmas” blotted out,
While “Happy Holidays” they shout.

All signs of Christ are tucked away,
As Santa Claus comes out to play.

And malls begin to overflow,
Church attendance starts to slow.

People look for other things,
Replacing joy that Jesus brings.

Complaining every time they see,
Reminders of His infancy.

They want the party not the child,
His special day they have defiled.

Exchanged the gift – perfect and holy,
For worldly gifts of pagan folly.

Any other god can reign,
But from the Christ we must refrain.

And here’s the reason, simple yet true,
From the very first Christmas, it’s nothing new.

There’s one who is called the father of lies,
And though defeated, he still tries.

To turn our eyes away from Christ,
And so began the manger heist.

To keep our lips from saying His name,
He tries to steal the Savior’s fame.

Close our ears from hearing His voice,
Telling us He’s not the only choice.

Jesus said - I Am the only way,
But people don’t like to hear that today.

They want to choose the path they take,
Even when it ends in a fiery lake.

The world still wants to party and sing,
But never bow to a holy King.

So shop they will and hang their lights,
And toast to the season ‘most every night.

Removing Christ from mangers and art,
But cannot remove Him from a follower’s heart.

“Happy Holidays” will never bring,
The joy in which the angels still sing.

I’ll join their chorus without fear,
And wish you “Merry Christmas!”
loud and clear.

Friday, December 2, 2011

The Christmas Letter

Reposted from Christmas past...

Just a letter once a year, folded in a card.
What's the big deal? That shouldn't be too hard.

Just put my pen to paper, and write a word or two,
Telling of the happenings, the old and the new.

Why does it feel like therapy, as I sit and reminisce?
Over opportunities, those taken and those missed.

The trials and the blessings, enough to fill a year.
Ones that made us laugh, and those that brought us fear.

Of lives that changed forever, and those that wouldn't budge.
Teaching us this lesson - it's not for us to judge.

God is working everywhere, in every single day.
We don't know the how or why, and we don't pick His way.

I'd choose the path with flowers, the one that's smooth and clean,
But God allows some potholes, to let His grace be seen.

Life is like a story, a stack of letters sent.
Revealing where we're headed, and where we just went.

Another year folded up, and placed within a card.
With creases made by choices, some easy and some hard.

All together they add up, to life that's full and blessed.
Every year through pen and ink, I put this to the test.

But every time I start to write, I'm overwhelmed with praise.
For all God's done within a year - three hundred and sixty five days.

Those things I saw as problems, He used within His plans.
Teaching me this simple truth - It's all within His hands.

I hope this letter finds you, believing even more.
And knowing Him more fully, than all the years before.

And know that in my story, you hold a special part,
Not just in Christmas letters, but deep within my heart

©2009 Charlotte Foster