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Posts Tagged ‘#Church’

Yay, it’s another weekend! Opportunities to do what we want, when we want, go where we want, etc. I guess that all boils down to having the freedom to choose.Nautilus Shell Perhaps your city borders a body of water and you are headed for the beach.

I live on the North Shore and Cleveland Borders Lake Erie. The parks system has taken over and is already making changes that delight beach goers. Our parks system has a lot of events and attractions to educate and entertain the citizens of our city and their guests. Being close to nature or even interacting with it, can be a stress-free way to spend the weekend. And every group imaginable has a festival of some kind going this summer!

I’ve got some chores to do, such as cutting the grass and trimming the over growth in the yard. I guess it would be safe to say that my yard needs a good haircut and weeding. Grape Hyacinths & Vinca FlowersThis photo was in the spring with Grape Hyacinths and Myrtle. Part of the gardening under my River Birch Tree in the front yard. I found a young black cat sleeping in the Myrtle the other day just as my yellow tabby had done when I decided to claim her as my own many years ago. It is a cushy spot and sort of out of the way so the little one felt protected until I showed up and discovered it’s hiding place.

Sometimes I have to contend with spiders in the yard. A few years ago, Spider Web3 IMG_5715for the first time in my life, ordinary garden spiders moved in. They were everywhere stringing 3 foot webs across walkways and wherever else they could. I’d come home in the dark from a second shift and walk right into one. They changed their locations daily so I never knew where they’d be from day to day or even hour to hour. This is a picture of a web with foam on it to enhance the web. Yuck!!!

Snake on the Driveway 5-2011And of course I have also found other critters in the yard such as this common Garden Snake that some folks like to call Garter Snakes. This was a cute one but I have seen them at least 2 feet long in my yard. Not dangerous but creepy.

I’ve seen possums and their babies, frogs, dragonflies, praying matis, all kinds of spiders and bugs, squirrels, birds and a host of other things in my little 35′ x 105′ living space. I don’t have to go far on a weekend to get some entertainment.

How about you, what are your weekend plans? Vacationing or staying close to home? Lots of choices to pack into a 2 day weekend!

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I usually go to church each Sunday. We have four services, but I usually attend the 9am one. Cross WoodI’ve been going to church all of my life as a ritual. When I was little my mother made sure we went with her while my father opted to stay home. That must have made her feel really good … hmmmm. Well anyway, due to some circumstances at home, I could not attend today, but I missed hearing my pastor’s thoughts. I’ll be able to listen to them on the internet next week as they are recorded, but I still miss hearing them fresh.

When I was older, I went to church because I liked it. I wanted to know God personally but sadly after 12 years of religious training I could not tell someone how to become a Christian. It dawned on me that I could give information to people on how to become a member of my religion, but I could only tell them about God from what someone else had told me and not a personal perspective.

It wasn’t until I was in college, that someone told me how I could know God personally for myself, and not second hand through someone else.

The first step was knowing that I was a sinner. I may have had the best intentions, but compared to a holy God, I had flaws and that made me a sinner: Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

The second step was to acknowledge that sin (including my sin) causes death and separation from a holy God. Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death … ”

The third step was to understand and believe that we die once and after death comes judgement by a holy God. Hebrews 9:27 “For it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgement”

The fourth step was to acknowledge and accept for myself (make personal) that Jesus paid the penalty for our sins. John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotton Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life.”

The fifth step was ask Jesus Christ to come into my heart, cleanse me from my sins, and make me a Child of God & a new person. Revelations 3:20 “For behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice, and opens the door, I will come in to him, and dine with him and he with Me.”

The sixth step was to accept that God made me His child through His Son and that I have everlasting life in heaven with Him. John 5:24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.

The seventh step was to understand that God made me into a new creature the moment I made the decision to trust the death of Jesus Christ on the cross as full payment for my sins. 2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”

This is how I came to know God personally and Church became an intimate encounter with God and His Children instead of a Ritual to be observed. Once I believed God’s plan as outlined in the Bible and gave my heart and life to Christ, asking Him to dwell in me, it made all the difference in the world.

Do you have a similar story to share? Please feel free to tell us about your own spiritual journey.

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