Thursday, December 31, 2015
Tonight we attended New Year's Eve service at Bethel. We took communion together as a church. Before we took communion, Pastor Davis preached the direction for 2016. His main point was that we are to "FEAR NOT". We stand upon the brink of a new year. We want to anticipate that everything will be good. In reality we know that is not the case. Good things will happen and bad things will happen, this is life. It is clear we are living in perilous times. There is a Tsunamie of unrightousess taking place in the world today. What was declared to be wicked at one time is now applauded. What was declared to be good at one time is now frowned upon and despised. Wicked behavior is now embraced as heroic . Terror is all around us, it would seem that no place is safe anymore. There is no doubt we are living in troubled times. Pastor believes we are entering into the time of sorrows. We wish that we could say that things will be better, but the Bible tells us that things are only to become worse in the world. Ready or not here comes 2016. We read in the Bible about King David. He was living in a time much like we are today. He was dismayed and called out to God for answers. Just like David was dismayed, we too call out to God for answers. Jesus is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He is the answer to all things. In these days, we need the spirit of Jesus to cover us, to minister to us, to deliver us and heal us. Just as God spoke to David and we now have Psalm 37:1-7, we know to delight ourselves in the Lord. No matter what happens in 2016, we are to FEAR NOT! God has not given us the spirit of fear, but has given us a sound mind. When you lay your head down to sleep and the devil starts to whisper fear into your mind and heart, you get up out of bed and tell the devil to get behind you. Speak the name of Jesus! Evil in this world is rising. Do not be afraid, God is with you. You have Angels who walk with you. Psalm 23 tells us that we can walk through the valley of the shadow of death and we do not need to fear evil, for God is with us. No matter what 2016 brings, Jesus will be with us every step of the way. We will go through things we don't understand, people will hurt us, life happens. Do not worry or be afraid, God is with you all the way to the end of the situation. As long as God wants you to live, you will live. God has a work for you to do and you will do it as long as you continue to walk with Him. In 2016, do not be afraid and be ready to reap a mighty harvest! Remember, the best is yet to come. So to, 2015 I (Julia) say goodbye and to 2016, I walk forward without fear into what God has for me. God is good.
Wednesday, December 30, 2015
I was looking over the pictures today of our trip to the Appalachian mountains. Once again I was reminded of how it's truly better to give than to receive. We had a nice Christmas. There was a lot of presents under the tree and time with family was great. For me, this year, the best part was driving 24 hours to bring cheer to a forgotten place. I don't know how their Christmas day was, I do know for a moment, they forgot their empty stomach and felt the warmth of kindness. In this new year, I will keep walking and remember what matters. The best way to teach my son kindness is to show kindness. The best way to teach him to give is to be a giver. The best way to teach him to be like Christ is to keep Christ first in my life. I'm thankful for the gift to give this Christmas. God is good.
Tuesday, December 29, 2015
Around this time of the year, I sense my direction for the new year. I took a look at my thoughts from the beginning of this year and it very much was on point. There was a lot of things that happened in my life this year that put me on the path I am presently on. I found my Esther moment, my for such a time as this. There have been some roller coaster life events and by the grace of God, we made it through. The world events are wound up so tight, that I am sure next year will be filled with turmoil and sorrow. God is coming soon and it's only going to get worse. This is my time to shine and just keep walking. It does not matter what is going on to the left of me, the right of me or even behind me. My focus is on Christ and being a light to all those around me. In 2016, I will just keep walking. God is good.
Monday, December 28, 2015
We are home and everyone is enjoying their Christmas gifts. The air outside has a bite in it and there are reports that we may get a little bit of snow. I'm looking forward to the new year. This year has flown by and has had it's ups and downs, for that is life. I don't know what 2016 holds for us. It will bring change since we will be electing a new President of The United States of America. Regardless of who wins, I know God is in control and that is all that matters. God is good.
Sunday, December 27, 2015
Today we attended service at Solid Rock in NJ. It was a simple service filled with the peace of God. Later in the day we had another dinner, the house was filled with family and friends. Sounds of laugher and children running around filled the air as we ate. It was a wonderful end to a very good Christmas. God is good.
Saturday, December 26, 2015
Today is the day of making the family rounds. We visited some and some visited us. Presently, I'm at Aunt Theresa's house with a nice amount of family as we watch a Christmas favorite, "It's A Wonderful Life". Seeing everyone is always nice. God is good.
Friday, December 25, 2015
This morning, we awoke to the excited sounds of RJ as he discovered the gifts under the tree. Joe Joe and Noah came over and the boys opened their gifts. It was so warm today that the boys were outside playing until the rain came. Later in the evening we ate a Prime Rib dinner. It's been a nice Christmas Day. God is good.
Thursday, December 24, 2015
We are in NJ spending Christmas with Grammy. The house was made into a Christmas wonderland by my niece Taylor. The boys along with Bob decorated the tree and completed the Christmas touch. This year we taught the boys how to bread shrimp and we all worked together to make a Seafood dinner. To end the evening, we attended a candlight ceremony at the Port Rebublic Church. We attend every year and it's the highlight of our Christmas. I love to give gifts, above that, I love to celebrate the birth of our savior Jesus. We stopped at Smitheville on the way back to the house, to see the Christmas lights. I'm so thankful that Jesus was born. God is good.
Wednesday, December 23, 2015
Tuesday, December 22, 2015
Today we celebrated Christmas in our home. Santa came while we were sleeping and RJ was so exited that he woke up at 4am. Thankfully, he went back to sleep (sort of) until 6ish in the morning. Me, well I stayed away and boy am I am tired, but it's a happy tired. It was nice to watch everyone open their gifts. RJ is growing up and changing. He wanted us to open our gift from him first before he opened his gifts. Once everything was opened and my floor was covered with wrapping paper, I took a picture and started to clean up. RJ and Ross happily started to enjoy their gifts until the doorbell rang. We had a visitor. Our Jewish friend came with a gift. It was wrapped in Hanukah paper and a perfect gift for our family. We appreciate his friendship. Later in the day, Bob cooked a Christmas feast of duck and trimmings. I love this day. A day of rest, a day to be together as a family. Of course, we did not forget the most important part of this day. Jesus, the reason for this season. We lit a candle and sang to Jesus to celebrate his birth. I'm thankful for family and I'm thankful that the Prince of Peace filled our home today. God is good.
Monday, December 21, 2015
Tonight is our Christmas Eve. We have been baking cookies and just having a nice time together as a family. Every year we bake a birthday cake for Jesus. True to form, every year, something goes wrong with the cake. One year the stove caught on fire. The past two years, the cake cracked down the middle. I can't explain it. I bake all the time and for the most part, what I bake comes out tasting and looking pretty yummy. This year, I checked on the cake and was floored to see that it was overflowing. I quickly cleaned up the mess and figured it was done. Not so, it started to overflow again. How was it possible for this cake to have that much batter that it was overflowing so much! I sat there and watched this cake and knew once again, believe it or not, Jesus was saying something to us. What I saw was that Jesus' love overflows for us. This season is about the birth of Jesus Christ. He was born, so he could die for you and I. His love for us overflows and covers our sins. I'm so thankful for his grace and mercy that follows us. Happy Birthday Jesus, we love you. God is good.
Sunday, December 20, 2015
Saturday, December 19, 2015
Today was a day of rest in our home. Bob and I were very tired from our trip to the Appalachian Mountains. It was nice to sit on the couch with a cup of coffee in hand and enjoy the Christmas season. Tomorrow will be a fun day, we have a lot of things planned. For now, I will wrap a few presents and enjoy a day of rest. God is good.
Friday, December 18, 2015
Bob and I drove a Uhaul through the night to make sure we arrived in the Applachian mountains before school ended. We arrived just in time. When I walked into one of the classrooms with the gifts, the children started jumping up and down shouting that it was a Christmas Miracle. When I brought in the coats, their eyes became huge. It had started to snow and one little girl was sad because she didn't have a coat. When I put the coat on her, she fell to her knees at her teachers feet asking if it was really true. Did she really have a new coat. Was she really going to be warm? When she learned the answer was yes, she started to cry. I cried too. Many of the children were holding tight to their presents as if they might disappear. While all this was happening, my husband and two factory executives(from our company) were unloading the uhaul truck. As they were putting the bags of clothing out, the teachers were literally running to their classrooms with items they knew their students needed as well as the students family members. I knew there was a great need in this community, but had no idea how truly great it was and still is. Since most of the coal mines have shut down, the area has been devastated. This is how RJ's idea of Project "Go Away" started. He wanted to do something for a town we all love dearly. I can not express my gratitude enough to the parents and students at RJ's school. We could not have brought the items if it had not been for the generosity of UHaul. I will not soon forget the looks of joy on the faces of the Appalachian children. Today, they discovered that they have not been forgotten. God is good.