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A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.19.20

By | A Moment To Praise
A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.19.20
Joyce Lochinger

Miss Joyce

Light Of The World

You can do a lot of things with light! You can see better, for one thing. The light of the sun can  warm you. You can make shadow puppets. Plug in a night light so you’re not afraid at bedtime. You can also shine a flashlight into the darkest of nights so that your path is clear and can be seen before you. Here’s a story about my favorite light!

When I was a kid, I had a glow-in-the-dark figurine of a little girl praying that I had gotten in Sunday school. It looked like this.

I grew up in a pretty rural area and when it was bedtime, it was dark! Really, really dark! Both outside and inside my room! When I received this little trinket for memorizing a Bible verse, I was thrilled. Every night when I went to bed I waited for my eyes to adjust to the dark and for it to start to shine. I never felt alone in the dark with that comforting praying girl nearby.

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.19.20 in Scripture

Now, I don’t have that little figurine anymore, although I wish I did for memory’s sake. However, I do have something much, much better: Jesus! Jesus tells us He is the light of the world. He has enough brightness for everyone on the entire earth to see and follow Him.
https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+8%3A12&version=NIV

Jesus came to this world so that we would not have to walk around in the darkness that sin causes.  He came to give us life – forever and ever.

Remember the next time you are in the dark: you are not ever alone. Jesus is right there beside you, brightly lighting the way.

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.19.20 in Song

Our song for the day is called, “Light Of The World” from VBS a few years back. Sing along and remember that Jesus is the Light Of The World!

https://youtu.be/eI302Av7vSI

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.19.20 Learn More

I always loved to make hand puppets in the dark with a flashlight. Here are some images for you to try for yourself.  Even the darkest of nights can be made bright!

https://etc.usf.edu/clipart/galleries/266-hand-shadow-puppetry

Hand Shadow Puppetry | ClipArt ETC

The Hand Shadow Puppetry ClipArt gallery offers 15 examples of animals such as a butterfly, dog, donkey, or elephant represented in shadow by one or two human hands. Hand-shadow of Butterfly. Hand-shadow of Camel. Hand-shadow of Chamois. Hand-shadow of Dog. Hand-shadow of Donkey. Hand-shadow of Elephant. Hand-shadow of Goat. Hand-shadow of Goose.

etc.usf.edu

Have a great week!

A Moment To Praise 5.18.20

By | A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise 5.18.20

Joyce Lochinger

Joyce Lochinger, Gravel Hill Worship Leader

Hope
I am a firm believer in the fact that God speaks to us in many ways. In my lifetime, He has spoken to me through scripture, life events, and most often through people. In particular, He speaks to me through respected and loved people in my life who are good and Godly examples that I trust. So when I am struggling with a problem or when I’m feeling insecure over a new endeavor, I have learned to wait for a little bit of time and see who God sends my way with a message of either affirmation or maybe with a message of, “not quite yet”.

Recently, I was talking to Jenna about the state of the medical crisis we are currently in. I was asking her and Victor’s (my son-in-law) professional opinions as healthcare workers. In general, our conversation jumped all over the place, both positive and negative thoughts came out about what’s going on right now in our state and in our world. My feelings after this conversation, all though I try not to feel this way, led me to feel a sense of hopelessness. Def: Hopelessness: a feeling or state of despair; lack of hope.  Yes, that’s the feeling!

Now  here’s where the beginning of the devotion comes back into play. A few days after my conversation about hopelessness with my daughter, I got a text message from her. All it said was – you should write your next devotion on Psalm 42:11.  My return text to her was – 🤔 hmmm! That meant, “I know what you’re doing here child! You’re trying to mother your mother!” But it was actually very sweet! However, I must say that I didn’t really act on her words. In fact, I went right on with my day and forgot about the scripture she had sent. Quite frankly, I was too busy letting that hopeless feeling I had been nursing for a few days continue to hold court in my head. Shame on me!

A Moment To Praise 5.18.20 in Scripture

Now – fast forward to the next morning.  I sat down and I opened my devotions for the day and the scripture caught me attention. Let me remind you that this was the very next day after I had heard from my daughter about Psalm 42:11. What was the scripture, can you guess? Yup! Psalm 42:11

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm+42%3A11&version=NIV

Exactly the scripture that she had asked me to please look at and use! It became so very clear that God was actually the one speaking to me and He was actively pursuing my mind!  I immediately told Jenna, whose response held a little smug, “I told you so!” type of tone. But I didn’t care, because she was right. She was being led by a God who chases us down at every turn, every step of our journey.  I am so thankful for a God who loves me that way and for children who have grown to listen to God and nurture their mother when she needs it! Which is sometimes often…Yikes! Did anyone else just hear both of my daughters saying, “you got that right!”?😊

A Moment To Praise 5.18.20 in Song

Our song for the day is called, “My World Needs You” by Kirk Franklin. I have never been more sure of that statement than now. We all need God to fill up this place and show us His face. And we need to keep the hope and peace we have that is only from Him, ever present in our hearts and minds as we walk through this journey called life. He is our only HOPE!

https://youtu.be/UoOtqAus1YM

Have a peace-filled week in Him! And have hope!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.12.20

By | A Moment To Praise
A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.12.20
Joyce Lochinger

Miss Joyce

I’m Trusting

One of my favorite memories from being a kid in kids’ choir was when we made our own drums out of coffee cans. We decorated them and then played them while we sang The Little Drummer Boy in front of the whole church! I was so into that! Well, if I’m honest, I was into making the drumming noise more than the singing part of the whole thing! Yes, I was that kid.🙂

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.12.20 in Song

So, take a listen to this song from last year’s VBS and then continue reading. https://youtu.be/0VDpHibftHs

In the beginning of this song, the VBS leaders are supposed to tell you to pretend you’re playing the drums! In the case of the video they are “air drumming” but you get the point! I have to tell you, when I first played this song in kids’ choir it took me right back to making noise and playing my coffee can drum when I was a kid! What fun memories.

Fun and Purpose

As is the case with all of the VBS songs we have done, there is a load of fun with a generous amount of purposefulness packed into each tune!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.12.20 in Scripture

It’s hard to miss the point of our song today about trusting God because He is good! Not only is the point made in the song, but it is also made in scripture, many times.  Here is just one example of that.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psalm+25%3A8&version=GW

If you believe what the song says and you believe the Bible, then you know that God is good, there’s no question about it. And since we know that He is is good, we know that we can trust Him, and believe Him, because He would never do anything to hurt us or lead us astray. That’s a promise we can count on!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.12.20 Learn More

So, enjoy your week knowing that God has you in His trustworthy, good hands! That thought gives you the chance to check out this craft. Give it a try. Then you can use your hands to praise Him and give Him thanks!

https://projectkid.com/toy-spin-drum/

Have a great week! I miss seeing all of your happy faces!

A Moment To Praise 5.11.20

By | A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise 5.11.20

Joyce Lochinger

Joyce Lochinger, Gravel Hill Worship Leader

His Eye is On the Birds and On Me – and He Cares Deeply About All of Us.

Some of you know that Shawn and I are grandparents! YAY!

Let me rephrase that. We are bird grandparents! Yes, Jenna and Victor (our daughter and son-in-law) have 2 small parrots. Technically, they are called Conures.

Both of these little creatures have many unique attributes including their distinct personalities and differing physical features. They also have many things in common.  One thing in particular is that they have an abundance of feathers! Big and little, red, green, blue and yellow ones. When we bird sit, their feathers show up everywhere. Fun fact: lots of feathers equals a lot of vacuuming. But, I digress. So as any good grandparent does, I have pictures of them to share.

If you look closely at these two birds, you will see how magnificently beautiful they are. The colors are vibrant and fade from one shade into another, the design of their beaks and talons are specific to their needs and sizes. They even have the tiniest of eyelashes that help to protect their eyes and give them a somewhat exotic look.  The one thing that amazes me the most is the exact placement of every soft, wispy feather that adorns their bodies. Every one of them was placed there by a very creative artist: God. He created them with great love, great patience and a good dose of great beauty. And He loves them!

A Moment To Praise 5.11.20 in Scripture

Luke 12:6-7 (NIV)

Matthew 6:26 (NIV)

Bible Gateway passage: Matthew 6:26 – New International Version

Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?

www.biblegateway.com

As we look at the scripture references for today, we see that God uses birds and their beauty to make a point to us about how much He loves and cares for us! Yes, us! Read carefully. If God pays such attention to the detail of a small animal like a bird, think of how much attention He pays towards us. How much care and concern He has for us.

Applying This Thought to My Life

When I think about these passages and how my life has played out, I can see very clearly situations in which God has taken care of me. In some circumstances, I was aware of his presence and then there were times where I was totally unaware of his helpful hand.

This past week, when there were those few days that were really warm, (remember them?) we turned on our air conditioner and had one day of coolness only to awake the next morning to warmer house temperatures that continued to rise throughout the day. After a consultation with the A/C technician, it was determined we needed a new A/C unit. First thought – YAY! Woohoo! (insert sarcasm here). But, as we were just beginning to think that this was a horrible thing and that we don’t have the money for this, we remembered that we had just gotten our stimulus check direct deposited in the bank. And then with more investigation, we realized that the bill was almost exactly the total amount of the stimulus check. The money we had just received would pay for most of the A/C replacement that we needed.

We immediately saw and acknowledged that God had provided for us in this situation.

I can honestly say that this exact scenario has happened many times in our lives where we were in a bind and somehow (we know, through God’s goodness) we were blessed with what we needed. Thank you, God!

When I think of these situations and the scriptures, I also think of the song, His Eye is On the Sparrow. I have no doubt that God takes care of me. I should never be discouraged or worried.

A Moment To Praise 5.11.20 in Song

Watch and listen to this a cappella rendition of the song and remember to look at the birds of the field (or the ones in your house!) and know that God cares for them, but cares for you so much more!

Have a great week in His love.

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.5.20

By | A Moment To Praise
A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.5.20
Joyce Lochinger

Miss Joyce

Hi kids and parents! Today we’re going to talk about what it means to lean on God and not on yourself. Here we go!

When I was growing up, there were four kids and a lot of rules in my house. Your house probably has rules too, right? Here are some of mine from childhood. My mother and father would always remind me to keep my elbows off of the table, and not to let my glasses slide down my nose. I always would try to look over the top of them, which didn’t help me see any better. There was also a rule about not slouching against the wall or leaning on anything for that matter! I couldn’t understand the need for any of these rules as a kid. I especially didn’t understand the rule about not leaning on anything!

Why did that matter? Who cared? But as an adult, I understand. My parents didn’t want me to look sloppy, lazy, look like I had an attitude, or appear disinterested in what I was doing or where I was.

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.5.20 in Scripture

Maybe, like you, I didn’t always like to listen to what my parents said. I guess that is how it is when you are growing up! Rules are just not a top priority! As I got older, I realized that God talks to us in scripture about leaning on things, too! Believe it or not, just like my mom and dad did, God tells us that we are not supposed to lean on things. Wow! It must be an important rule, huh? Here’s what God says:

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Proverbs+3%3A5&version=ESV

God tells us not to lean on our own understanding. This scripture means we are not to do things on our own without looking to Him. God wants us to seek His opinion and advice through prayer, reading our Bible, and listening to our Sunday school lessons. He wants us to lean on him, not our own thoughts or ideas. He wants to be in our hearts and minds at all times and wants to help us make decisions that will be good for us and for others. Do not lean on your own understanding. Instead, lean on Him.

There you have it, we have one place where we are allowed to lean. We are allowed to lean on God. We are allowed to use Him for guidance and strength and ask Him to help us through all of the crazy, confusing or scary times that happen in our lives. Today, I’m giving you permission to lean. Go ahead. Sit back and chill out in the love and warmth of God. He says it’s ok!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.5.20 in Song

Here’s the song “Leaning On The Everlasting Arms”.  Try to dance along with the kids in the video! It’s fun to dance and enjoy God’s love!

https://youtu.be/1CYNHT08_m0

Leaning on the Everlasting Arms | Roar VBS | Group Publishing

Enjoy the music…sing and dance along to Leaning on the Everlasting Arms music video from Roar VBS! NOW AVAILABLE ON AMAZON: https://www.amazon.com/Leaning-Ev...

youtu.be

A Moment To Praise For Kids 5.5.20 Learn More

Parents: I encourage your to help your children remember a challenge that we always did during Vacation Bible School.  We would ask the children to look for God sightings. God sightings were any event from their day, whether it was through nature or interaction with others, that showed the love of God.  The kids always loved to speak out loud about their God Sightings with much excitement!

I’m asking you to extend the idea of God sightings and ask your children to tell you ways in which God has shown that He is faithful and strong enough for us to lean on.  See what answers you get.  I bet the kids will have a lot of answers to that question and it will make for great conversation in your house. You could even add your sightings as well!

Share them with me if you like, and have a great week everyone!

 

A Moment To Praise 5.4.20

By | A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise 5.4.20

Joyce Lochinger

Joyce Lochinger, Gravel Hill Worship Leader

My soul cries out to Thee …

A Moment To Praise 5.4.20 in Scripture

Psalm 130: 1-2

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm+130%3A1-2&version=NIV

Read the first two verses of this psalm, then read them again! Does the feeling that David is expressing feel familiar to you?  Does it remind you of how you have felt today? Or maybe how you have felt in the past?  You probably have gone through some things in your life that have caused you to cry out to God, just as the psalmist is doing in this verse. Well, the ‘psalmist’ was me today! Nothing seems to be going well and I am feeling like the world is crashing in all around me. Between divisive talk among people, some of whom claiming to be believers in Christ, and contrasting thoughts on life, I am left not knowing where to turn. So, I cry out to God! Why is this happening, Lord? Why do I feel like I do? I hear myself and I realize that I am exactly where David was in the book of Psalm. I am definitely mirroring his thoughts and feelings. My guess is that you have been in that situation or maybe you are there right now, as I am.

My soul cries out to Thee …

Honestly, I don’t want us to be doing this activity together. I don’t want myself or any of us to be feeling this way.  Because I know what is causing these thoughts and anxieties in me, and it’s not from God. That is a frightening feeling. If they’re not coming from God, where are these feelings coming from? I think you know. The evil one likes to try to pull us away from our sanity and well-being.  He likes to cause confusion, frustration and fear. That’s right, fear!  At times, I don’t like to say that I have fear. It’s an ego thing, I think.  Instead, I say that I have the “what ifs” and the “what abouts”.  You know, the words that come out of your mouth when something causes you to have fear. What if this happens and what about this person or that circumstance. In this moment of the what ifs and what abouts, fear has a hold on me. Now certainly, this doesn’t happen to me every day, but it is definitely happening today!

God tells us that fear is not one of the fruits of the Spirit.  As you may remember, the fruit of the Spirit is the result of the Holy Spirit living inside of you. The fruits are: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self Control. These attributes are “grown” from the presence of God’s goodness in our lives. These are the truths of God. So if the fruit of the Spirit is the truth from God, then what is fear?  Fear is a liar.  It’s an emotion that is designed to cause turmoil and chaos in your life.  We should not let it into our hearts, minds, or souls.

My soul cries out to Thee …

How can this happen for all of us? We can start off by crying out to God for his relief and guidance, then pray, asking God to lead us and keep us calm and at peace. Then, we can stop those fearful thoughts before they take hold and enter into our spirits. You have the power to do that with God’s help! So shoo them away.  You have the power to tell Satan to “get thee behind me!” By the way, this quote comes from Matthew 16:23 and was spoken by Jesus, so we’ll be in good company! It is a powerful quote to use.

Here’s a funny story to end our thoughts today. I have a friend (you know who you are) with whom I had shared the last quote, “get thee behind me Satan!” when she was having doubts and fear in a situation. She relayed to me a few weeks after we had talked that she had been practicing that quote from Jesus in her life. In one instance, she was driving down the interstate and in front of her was a car with a vanity license plate that read, “SATAN”. It unnerved her a bit, but almost instantly she knew what she needed to do. She decided to speak the quote from Matthew 16:23 out loud. As she hurriedly passed this car, she said to herself with a chuckle, “get thee behind me Satan!” and of course he did!

I hope that you can do that today, tomorrow, or whenever you need it and rely solely on God and his goodness in your life. Do not allow the evil one and his favorite instrument, fear, in to ruin your day! Trust in Jesus and His powerful love for you.

A Moment To Praise 5.4.20 in Song

This song is in honor of everyone’s fight to overcome this world and the fear that it can bring.

https://youtu.be/sQTnREEtuNk

Zach Williams – Fear Is a Liar (Official Lyric Video)

#ChainBreaker is alailable everywhere: https://ZachWilliams.lnk.to/CBDeluxeMS Listen to the new album #RescueStory now: https://ZachWilliams.lnk.to/RescueSto...

youtu.be

Have a fearless week everyone! Be in His love!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 4.28.20

By | A Moment To Praise
A Moment To Praise For Kids 4.28.20
Joyce Lochinger

Miss Joyce

Made For This!

Hi kids and parents! I have to tell you about a great story I read this week. It’s about a very young nurse who decided to use her two weeks vacation to travel to a different hospital in a different town to help people who were not feeling well. On her last day working at the new hospital, she watched one of her patients who had been very sick turn the corner and get well! That patient turned to her and said, “Thank you! I love you!” The young nurse’s heart spilled over with joy!

When asked how the words from the patient made her feel, the nurse said, “I know that God put me here just for this moment. I know I was meant to help this person get well!”

I know that God put you here for a purpose, too. Even though you are young, you can do great things. I have seen some of your works in action. I know a lot of you are sharing some of your pretty amazing talents with your family and friends. For example, I love seeing your chalk art when I take my walks. I’m amazed at your parents’ pictures of them on Facebook too! I hear stories of how you have been helping your brothers and sisters with school work and helping with chores. It seems that for the most part, you have all been behaving! 😇I also love to check out the Gravel Hill Sunday School page on Facebook to see the ways in which you are all still “attending” Sunday school even when we can’t be together in church. You still have the desire to learn stories about Jesus and the good works He did! Way to go!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 4.28.20 in Scripture

You may find this hard to believe, but God has made you for greatness.  He has made you for good works, too.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Exodus+9%3A16&version=ICB

I’m so proud of all of you. You are listening to God even while we are having to live a little differently than before.  Not only that, but you are doing things in a positive way. You were made by God to do His work in this life and you are proving it! Keep it up, kids. You are a shining example of God in this world!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 4.28.20 in Song

Here’s a favorite VBS song from a few years ago. Enjoy and sing along!

https://youtu.be/jVKuOi3YEAM

A Moment To Praise For Kids 4.28.20 Learn More

Attached is a link to some amazing chalk art ideas. If you try them, have your parents attach a picture in the comments or on our Facebook page!

https://onelittleproject.com/sidewalk-chalk-ideas/

Keep using your talents to help share a smile and share God’s love. ❤️

Have a great week!

A Moment To Praise 4.27.20

By | A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise 4.27.20

Joyce Lochinger

Joyce Lochinger, Gravel Hill Worship Leader

Be still and know…

As most of the ladies in my Tuesday morning Bible study know, this is one part of scripture that I feel God has on repeat play, especially for me. In my everyday life, I tend to run ahead of Him and get myself into personal and spiritual upset and turmoil! When I step out without pausing and acknowledging God’s mighty hand in my life, I usually mess up and get myself into trouble. Anyone else have that happen in your life?

In those moments, I start to feel God tugging on my ear, hearing: “Joyce! Be still and know that I am God!”

A Moment To Praise 4.27.20 in Scripture

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm+46%3A10&version=NIV

Usually, if I am paying attention and not distracted, I can settle myself down and reflect a bit on what I am actually doing, saying, or trying to accomplish. That’s the effect that this verse has on me. God grabs my attention and gently reigns me back in. Thank goodness for His loving patience with me.

Recently, I read an interesting article about this verse. It said that most of us interpret the passage from Psalm 46 in that way that I’ve been describing above. It’s seen as a quiet, peaceful reminder to settle down and be calm in His presence. Ah! That’s just what we need – calm. However, moving forward, if you read the rest of verse 10, the scripture reveals an even greater call from God to all of us. It is a not so gentle reminder that He demands us to exalt Him. He is to be greatly revered for who He is. He says I WILL be exalted among the nations. I WILL be exalted in the earth.

Be still and know…

He is so much more than we give Him credit for.  We only tap into a small part of His power in our lives. Yes, He is able to calm our racing hearts and help us relax on the craziest of days. Fortunately for us, He actually wants to help us in those times. More importantly, He wants us to know Him as powerful Lord over all things.

It is wise for us to remember His omnipotent rule in our lives and most importantly, in the world. He is to be exalted, adored, honored and revered. If we make it our goal to look to Him and remember all of these things and that He is always on our side as we live in this world, we will naturally have the ability to be still and know He is God. Let’s face it, He can handle the problems of this life, He can handle the problems of the world, and He can handle the problems of the universe. He can certainly handle the problems of my day!

A Moment To Praise 4.27.20 in Song

Attached is one of my favorite praise songs that helps me feel the all-encompassing power that God has for me in my life! He helps me to realize that I can be still and safe, resting in His powerful arms.

https://youtu.be/NJpt1hSYf2o

A Moment To Praise For Kids 4.21.20

By | A Moment To Praise
A Moment To Praise For Kids 4.21.20
Joyce Lochinger

Miss Joyce

Good guys always finish last!

Hi Kids and parents!

I’m a finisher! I need things to be finished and when things will be finished. Good things or bad things, it doesn’t matter.  I need to know! Things I don’t like to wait for: presents, vacations, holidays – just to name a few.  🙂 I don’t like having a disagreement with someone, I need to know that it is over, and all is still well with that person. I think you get my drift. Bottom line is I like to know when and how things are going to turn out! I guess I am impatient.

A Moment To Praise For Kids 4.21.20 in Scripture

Our scripture for today tells us that God is not only the finisher, but He was first and He is last and He will come again!

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Revelation+1%3A8&version=CEB

God has it all figured out – do I really have to be so impatient to know every minute (small) detail?

“I need to trust” is more the thought on this day. God tells me He is control and He is holding me in his hands. I have nothing to fear. Just live my life and glorify and honor him! I can do that. I also need to remember the saying “good guys finish last”…God has promised us that he will finish what He started so many years ago. All we have to do is be ready for Him and we will be taken care of by His protective heavenly arms. He has the whole world in His hands, and that includes me! Amen!

A Moment To Praise For Kids 4.21.20 in Song

https://youtu.be/1M0DyNYz5gI

A Moment To Praise For Kids 4.21.20 Learn More

For some fun with the alphabet (because alpha- omega is from the Greek abc’s) click on this link for ideas for the abc game!!

https://www.tripsavvy.com/im-going-on-a-picnic-game-3267652

Have a great week!

A Moment To Praise 4.20.20

By | A Moment To Praise

A Moment To Praise 4.20.20

Joyce Lochinger

Joyce Lochinger, Gravel Hill Worship Leader

Choosing Joy!

Hi Everyone!

Tomorrow, I will be celebrating a birthday. Notice I didn’t say which one 🙂 Instead of choosing sadness or thinking about the things I won’t be able to do, I am going to choose joy and focus on the blessings that this strange season we’re in has brought to me. I am purposefully going to think about this place we are in with the quarantine and the blessings that I have experienced.

First off, I have both Shawn and Shay home with me, and we are all cohabitating very well together! I know that even though they aren’t with me, Jenna and Victor are safe and healthy in Pittsburgh. None of us have to leave our houses for work. Thank you, Lord.

My family – mother, mother-in-laws, father-in-laws, and my siblings are well, as are my nieces and nephews! Again, I thank you Lord! I have been able to take long walks with my daughter and husband and not have to rush because of an activity or work. We have had many great talks while we walk, put together puzzles, or played double dominoes. And we have had some silly times of laughter and joy!

A Moment To Praise 4.20.20 in Scripture

Yes, I am finding joy even in the midst of a different reality right now. How can there be joy? Well, I go to my absolute, favorite scripture for that answer. Anyone who knows me well knows that I love this scripture. Psalm 139:1-18!

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm+139%3A1-18&version=NIV

David is talking to the Lord. He is saying that God knows all of the little intricate details about his life. God knows what David thinks and where he goes. David speaks of all of these things in verse 1-12. Then he says: “Lord, you have created my innermost being! You knew me even before I was born.”

How can this not bring me joy? I’m not talking about happiness that only lasts for a moment, not a smile which comes and goes in minute, but residing JOY! Joy that fills me all the way, deep down in my heart.  Joy because of the knowledge that God has loved and cared for me even before I was born of my mother and father. This type of joy causes us to know that no matter what the world does or doesn’t do, we are special to God. And if we have accepted Him as our own personal Savior, we are covered. God has set a place aside for us, where we can eternally be with Him!

So, will I miss having a special dinner out, having birthday cake, having a visitor or two for my “special” day? Maybe I will! However, one thing I do know for sure is that if I choose to focus on the joy that God has given me through His Son’s life and death on the cross, I will have no reason to feel like I have missed out on anything. In fact, I will remember that I have been given everything and more!

As an aside, in case you forgot how human David was, continue reading the rest of Psalm 139, verses 19-22.

A Moment To Praise 4.20.20 in Song

I’m sharing a song that is an oldie, but listen carefully to the words. It applies to our lives today and every day! Trade in all of the stuff that bogs you down and choose the joy of the Lord!

https://youtu.be/dfR4pI_ZJdY

As a final note, I want to express my deepest gratitude to all of you who are essential workers who do not have the luxury of staying at home and working. Thank you isn’t even enough to say! My prayers are with you!

Also, I offer prayers for all of those who are struggling with health, finance or family issues during this time. My hope is that you will feel God’s loving arms embrace you and you can begin to heal.

And for all, I will continue to pray for God’s joy to fill your soul. Amen!