CHANGE OF PLAN

change of plan

I was going to share part 2 of the previous post today.

But I have a change of plan.

This change of plan is inspired from last Thursday evening.

A group of my fellow staff, church members, and myself were returning from attending the Exponential Conference in Orlando.

Our flight had been late to leave the gate so we already knew we would probably miss our connecting flight in Atlanta. We were also spread out throughout the plane so the person who was closest to the front planned to ask the flight crew or first flight attendant after deplaning to call the other gate to request if they could hold the flight for our group of 15 people. Our thinking was that they might not hold the plane for one person but hopefully would for a group of our size.

We began to taxi away from the gate to get in line for flight.

The picture above is what forced another change of plan.

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HE LAUGHS

laughs

Consider the following synonyms for the word laugh:

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

  • How many of these synonyms describe your laughing tendencies?
  • What triggers your laughter?
  • Have you ever responded with laughter when God speaks to you?
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SNOW DAY!

snowday

I enjoyed a snow day on Sunday, January 16th.

Living in South Carolina snow is a rare treat for this Midwesterner.

Because snow days are so rare in this area our city shuts down except for emergency workers and those dealing with any power outages that occur.

Thankfully, my household never lost power. We were able to enjoy watching the snow fall from the safety of our warm home.

I chose to not work on a post yesterday because I wanted to cherish the snow day.

Today, as the winter storm has finished dusting the earth with this fascinating white frozen water and the sun is starting to melt it away, I decided to share with you some favorite references to snow from scripture.

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SPEECHLESS

prayer guidance
  • When have you been speechless?
  • Was it a positive or negative reason that left you speechless?

Commonly, we think of speechless moments resulting from something that has suddenly happened to us, whether good or bad.

  • But what about those times when we have experienced something for an extended period and find ourselves speechless and uncertain how to proceed?
  • And what about those times someone we know is struggling or something has happened across the city, state, nation, or globe, and we find ourselves speechless?

Those times can feel much like the vantage point of the person outside the maze in the picture above.

Not knowing which words to speak, we hesitate and linger just outside of the maze, hoping for someone, something, anything, to illuminate our mind with the correct words and choice of direction

  • Does the Bible yield any encouragement or insight for these times of speechless uncertainty?
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Labor Shortages

laborshortage

Are you reading about labor shortages in the news feeds you follow?

Where in your neighborhood are you seeing examples of labor shortages?

Restaurants come to my mind…

Where has your experience been the opposite of the reported labor shortages?

Grocery stores and food delivery services come to my mind…

What causes labor shortages?

War? Aging out? Unwillingness? Poor work conditions? Fear?

What does a sunflower bloom with a single bee on it have to do with this line of questions about labor shortages?

What does any of this have to do with Bible study?

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Thoughts on Prayers

thoughtsonprayer

A guest post by Beth Beutler

“Send your thoughts, prayers, and good vibes.”

“I’m so sorry. You are in my thoughts and prayers.”

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family.”

In a world that is often decidedly not interested in serious prayer, we do see a lot of “thoughts and prayers” being offered when things get tough.  And things have been extra tough of late.  But how meaningful are these “thoughts and prayers,” really?

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PRIVATE PRAYER

downywoodpecker

A downy woodpecker like the one above visited the tree beside our balcony this morning as I was enjoying my private prayer time.

As I watched this cute little bird flutter around from branch to branch pecking at the bark, I found myself singing internally a praise song to the Lord.

My heart filled with joy to have a sighting of this cute bird.

At other times, my private prayer time is inside my home but where I can look out onto my balcony area.

Gazing on wildlife frequently brings me to praise and worship of my Lord as I also meditate upon His word to receive instructions for my day.

It is my habit to spend time in private prayer and reflection with my Lord.

  • Why do I practice this habit of private prayer and reflection?
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Being Grateful During Difficulties

grateful

I was distracted.

Shortly before I sat down at the computer to write we received news that a family member has entered the active dying phase.

Instead of writing a post for this blog what I really wanted to do was mindlessly play a card game on my computer or watch a movie where I did not have to think much about the plot line but just enjoy the scenery, clothing, or humor.

But instead, I texted friends who I knew I could ask to pray for the situation.

Each of them responded to me with a short prayer and encouragement.

I then opened my planning schedule to see what verse of scripture I had planned to work on today and read these words:

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CONSTANTLY DEVOTED

devoted relationship
  • What relationship in your life would you describe as constantly devoted?
  • What other words would you use to describe the relationship in addition to constantly devoted?
  • Persistent?
  • Faithful?
  • Loyal?
  • Others?
  • What elements of the relationship make it one that is constantly devoted?
  • Are you someone else’s constantly devoted relationship?
  • What does Romans 12:12 have to do with being constantly devoted in relationship?
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