disappointments

Disappointments come in all kinds of shapes and forms. They can be with people, failed plans, or even covid19 disruptions. It is what we do when they come that is a true test of character.

Christ told us we would have troubles not if or when but that we would.

I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16.33

The answer to disappointment is in that verse. Read it again.

I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

So, what are we to do when trouble comes? Know we can still have peace because of Christ!

What comfort and hope to lean in to our Savior!

And the best part is knowing this old world with all its trouble is not the end. Problems as fear of failure, fear of viruses, racism, selfishness, self preservation or success at the cost of another, and the list can go on, we must contend with on a daily basis. What would you add?

A glorious day we can look forward to is coming when we meet our Saviour face to face in glory.

Not only did He promise to give us peace, He promised He would return: “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” John 14.1-3

Here’s some other powerful passages to be encouraged about Christ’s return:

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.” I Thessalonians 4.16-17

And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves, people fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world. For the powers of the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” Luke 21.25-28

Until then don’t let disappointment reign. A heart divided can not breed contentment. Harboring hurts of today only ruins tomorrow.

be.the.light to the world around you!

#bethelight, #bethehope, #bethechurch, #covid19, #disappointment,#bebetter

© 2020 be.the.church aclearberry All Rights Reserved

hawk attack

It is not quite what you might picture – a hawk attacking, but rather this scenario is where a hawk was being attacked. Well, least those brave little band of birds were trying with out much success.

Covid19 gave me the opportunity to slow down and take some nature happenings in where I might have overlooked and definitely not stayed for the duration of the battle.

I always am in awe of Elohim – the name of God as our Creator. We really need to take in all He has created for us to enjoy and learn from.

Today, it was from a hawk attack.

We heard a raucous of birds outside and upon investigation, saw a hawk perched high up on a pole that we would have referred to as a telephone pole when I was younger. Now, it holds electrical wires and street lamps. So, here was the hawk and a few feet down the post for the lamp was a brave robin bawking as loud as it could and inching closer to that hawk.

Then, to our surprise, it darted right at it with barely a flinch from that old hawk. But, what happened next was even more shocking, several other birds came circling around and darting at it too. What I could gather was the whole neighborhood of birds were banding together to protect their young and nests. They were trying to thwart off the threat and were definitely stronger together. In the end, I am not sure if babies were saved or if they truly triumphed over that enemy, but oh what a valiant effort!

And so it is with us humans, our adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion as stated in I Peter 5.8.

Are we giving our best foot forward to defeat him?

Are we banding together with other brothers and sisters in Christ to make a more concerted effort?

What can we do to give that old ‘hawk’ a run for his money?

We must remember that we are made for community.

Community makes us stronger.

Community unites us.

And community is life-giving.

In the hawk attack, it literally was preserving life.

Those little, brave winged creatures were definitely stronger together.

It is the same with us. We are better together than alone.

For just as in one [physical] body we have many parts, and these parts do not all have the same function or special use, so we, who are many, are [nevertheless just] one body in Christ, and individually [we are] parts one of another [mutually dependent on each other]. Romans 12.4-5 AMP

Just as that hawk was looming over head and that one bird tried to do a little damage, it was only when the community of birds came together that they had a fighting chance.

Often Satan wants us to feel alone or get us to believe isolation is best and that we can fight the battle on our own. But, can we really?

Those tiny fowl were literally bearing each other’s burdens (Galatians 6.2) and displaying in full color how two (or three or four or ten) are better than one (Ecclesiastes 4.9).

How can you come alongside another and lift them up?

How can you band together like those little birds that became a flutter of wings attempting to overcome the threat?

That there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. If one member suffers, all suffer together…” I Corinthians 12.25

The Michael W. Smith song Surrounded has a line that says: “This is how I fight my battles.”

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=YBl84oZxnJ4

When we feel surrounded (maybe like the hawk being attacked), remind yourself when we put on the garments of praise and get in a posture of thanks towards God, the enemy has to flee. It may look and feel like you are surrounded, but know God is always willing and ready to surround and fight for you. Aren’t you glad you can say: “My God fights for me!”

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=RXTi5TAGN1c

We can learn many lessons from nature if we take time to pause and covid19 certainly has availed us some extra time to do so.

Would love to hear what you have been observing or learning during the worldwide shutdown. Please leave a comment.

© 2020 be.the.church aclearberry All Rights Reserved

delayed gratification

Delayed gratification is the best kind and a great lesson for kids and adults alike.

Adults, start saving for that dream vacation or start dreaming what you will do when regulations lift after covid19. Thinking about a plan helps the present restrictive present be more bearable.

So, I suggest during these trying times help yourself and any kids in your life have something to look forward to or come up with a plan for them to earn something might just prove a small price to pay for living in harmony and keeping sane during quarantine.

I watched a video where a little girl waited two years to get to go to Disney World. It was the only Christmas present that year for the kids. Her emotion overtook her as the gift of time and presence was received.

This reminded me of what God wants of us.

God wants our time.

He wants our presence.

And remember His promises always come to past, but more often than not it just might not be on our time table.

During these uncertain times we are walking through, remember:

• God is in control;

• He’s still on the throne;

• and He is in the business of seeing to it that all His plans come to fruition in His own sweet time.

Let His Word ignite your heart and help you…

be.the.light

to a world full of fear and uncertainty.

And He who was seated on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new.’ Also He said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.’” Revelation 21.5

God has made everything beautiful for its own time. ” Ecclesiastes 3.11

© 2020 be.the.church aclearberry All Rights Reserved

just be kind

As governments try to figure out how to ease back in to a new normal, please remember:

🛑 Some people don’t agree with the opening…that’s okay, be kind.

🏡 Some people are still planning to stay home…that’s okay, be kind.

🦠 Some are still scared of getting the virus and a second wave happening…that’s okay, be kind.

💰 Some are sighing with relief to go back to work knowing they may not lose their business or their homes…that’s great, be kind.

👩🏾‍⚕️Some are thankful they can finally have a surgery they have put off…that’s good, be kind.

📝 Some will be able to attend interviews after weeks without a job…be encouraging, be kind.

😷 Some will now always wear masks…god for them, be kind.

💅🏻 Some people will rush out to get the hair or nails done…that’s okay, be kind.

👉🏽 The point is, everyone has different viewpoints/feelings and that’s okay, just be kind.

We don’t have to agree, but we can be kind if we disagree.

We each have a different story. If you want to stay home, stay home, just be kind! If you need to go out, just respect others when in public and be kind! Don’t judge fellow humans because you’re not in their story or have the same views. We all certainly are in different mental states than we were months ago. So, what are we to do? JUST BE KIND!

Please remember this and try to be loving everyday to everyone for “Love is patient and love is kind.” (from I Corinthians 13)

As we are: “kind to one another, tenderhearted, and forgiving just as Christ has forgiven us…”(from Ephesians), the world will see us…

be.the.light

This entry was a Facebook post that I copied, edited, and added to. I do not know the original post-er or I would give credit where credit is due. Just trying to be kind (see what I did there). 😊

© 2020 be.the.church aclearberry All Rights Reserved

the other side of the fence

Along with economic loss and social changes (as mandatory mask wearing or socially distanced regulations), this pandemic has brought fear, isolation, loneliness, depression, and despair.

The statistics we are not hearing about often come from some of the above.

Let’s take a look on the other side of the fence.

Suicide!

It has been one month since 12 year old Hayden Hunstable took his life just days before his 13th birthday. I didn’t know him, but God loved him, his family loved him, and his dad is doing amazing to educate about the devastating affects of isolation.

You can read more about his particular story and what his dad is now doing by following this link:

https://www.haydenscorner.org/

Today, join me in praying for the “social and emotional development of our youth.”*

“Support non-profits focused on gaming and technology psychology, addiction, and abuse among children and young adults.”*

Also, pray for the many healthcare workers families who snapped during this crisis and took their own lives. I can’t imagine the sorrow felt by loved ones left behind.

These are crazy and unprecedented times. But, always keep the fact that God is in control, on His throne, and always near and dear to whoever calls upon Him. He is always as close as the mention of His name.

Call upon Jesus often as you daily pray for those on the other side of the fence.

Let us all strive to…

be.the.light

especially to the hurting world around us. People need to know there is a loving God who offers hope and suicide is not the answer to the hopelessness they may feel.

God does and will use everything for good. May we all feel His love and peace even in the midst of great sorrow.

The Lord is close to everyone who calls out to Him, to all who call out to Him sincerely.” Psalm 145.18

*quoted from the above website link

© 2020 be.the.church aclearberry All Rights Reserved

his name is Tom

As I pulled into the lot to order some chicken for a friend’s family whose spouse is dying, I saw him standing by the light on the opposite side of the drive in entrance way. He had a cardboard handwritten sign that said:

HOMELESS not HELPLESS.”

It was atypical.

It was unusual.

It made my heart sing.

Here he was just trying to survive and those words were life bringing and I pray life changing for all who read them including you.

Some may get offended that he is there asking for help, but the mere fact he is asking should pull on our heart strings to bleed compassion.

I got in the socially distancing only option of the day, aka the drive through and ordered extra chicken so I could park the car to bring some to him.

The intersection was a busy one and would be difficult to hand off some food to him driving out. Thus the reason I parked. Plus, I wanted more than a quick drive by hand off. He needed connection and I needed it too. Don’t we all during these trying times.

It is a time in life where many are afraid of others because of what germs they may be carrying. Still…

No excuse not to be kind.

No excuse to not reach out to our fellow man.

No excuse to not connect.

I asked his name as each nameless face has one. Please don’t forget that.

His name is Tom.

Behind every sign there is a name.

A story.

A baby born that a mother loved.

A child made perfectly by God above.

No one would will hard times on another, but we live in a sin-sick, fallen world and don’t know the full story behind the sign.

I wanted to pray with him. I wanted to talk more and hear his story. I wanted him to truly feel God’s love and understand His promises like this one👇🏼

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1.9

I wanted to truly live out the gospel when Jesus said:

A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” John 13.34

Because of the coronavirus, our interaction was short. With gloved hands, he took the food and said: “God bless you.”

And He does. I know this. Do you?

For anytime we do something to the least of these (Matthew 25.40), we walk away more blessed.

That is the whole plan of serving. We give yet we get so much more. So serve your fellow man with gusto and without seeking anything in return except the happiness that is brought on by giving.

How can you make the world a better place today? Now go do it and..

be.the.light

So many like Tom deserve our time, attention, care, and kindness, but most importantly our prayers.

His name is Tom. Won’t you please pray for him by name today?

©2020 be.the.church aclearberry

ideas for restructuring your life *

Some ideas for how to restructure your life during shutdown:

1. Accept that this is affecting you

2. Realize it affects our connection with others

3. Realize and accept it disrupts the structure and routines of our lives

4. Create a new structure

5. Include spiritual time daily – for example: read the Bible, listen to online services or devotions, talk to God or pray with or for others

6. Make time daily to connect with others

7. Do some type of physical exercise daily

8. Be careful with food choices (we have all heard of freshman15 – we don’t need covid19!)

9. Find a new routine and tell others about it

10. Stay informed but no more than an hour of news a day (15 minutes is good enough or less is best). Try some news free days in the new routine too!

We will get through this. We may have a new normal. But, remember this: God is on the throne, He is in control, and we can take solace in the fact that we have the hope of heaven.

If you are unsure of this, the Bible says to simply call upon the name of the Lord and you will be saved.

Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10.13

Let me know if any of the above helps or which one you will start applying today.

During these uncertain times, go…

be.the.light

Let others know of the hope you have within and how God will return:

https://bethechurch.home.blog/2020/05/01/return/

*I don’t know who first said these things as they were forwarded on from a friend and then I tweaked them. I always try to give credit where credit is do so if you are the originator, well done, thank you, and do identify yourself so your name can be attached.

© 2020 be.the.church aclearberry all rights reserved

life goes on

Week seven with shut down and life goes on

We are somewhat getting use to changes we thought we would never see in our lifetime like social distancing, mask wearing, and raw or dry hands from continually washing. We are doing life different from meeting friends outside sitting 6 or more feet apart to using technology more to connect to those we work with or love. Many are completing projects set on a shelf for years. Puzzles are being displayed. Games are being enjoyed. More walks and talks with those you share home with.

How’s it going for you? What have you been doing to stay sane and pass some time. I would love to hear what you have done to make life more bearable.

Here’s a few tips to keep sane and embrace life as we now see it:

Start a thankful list and add to it daily.

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” I Thessalonians 5.18

Start a list with the names of God to comfort you in lonely moments.

‘I am the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.” Revelation 1.8

Don’t stress about the happenings in this world. Remember: God is in control, still sits on His throne, and in the end all who call upon His name to be saved will live in glory with Him forever.

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.” I John 2.15-17

Move a little each day.

“… your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” I Corinthians 6.19+20

If you can’t get outside to move because of the represent restrictions then, I highly recommend joining the Facebook ‘view from my window’ group.

It is over 2 million people strong and many have posted amazing pictures of the view out their window during this worldwide shutdown.

It avails you to go ‘traveling’ without leaving your quarantined quarters.

In the meantime, try to…

Renew your mind.

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12.2

Be productive.

Be kind.

and…

be.the.hope, be.the.church, be.the.light

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.” I Peter 2.9

© 2020 be.the.church aclearberry all rights reserved

return

So not sure anyone out in cyberland noticed that I have been gone a minute. It was not intentional as even when I am traveling I have posts scheduled. Perhaps I needed a break from the 13 plus months of daily blogging or more likely God knew what was coming in our lives.

I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16.33

Crazy times we are walking through but here’s the thing: if you call yourself a Christian then you know the back of The Book says we win!

Fantasy, Light, Mood, Sky, Beautiful, Fairytale, Dream

God is in control. Christ is on throne, but the most important thing is this: He will return and take us with Him.

Shout a hallelujah.

Be safe and adhere to the guidelines and protocols wherever you live. We will get through this. Things will return to “normal.” But, I dare say we will never be the same nor should we be. Whenever we go through trials, coming out the other side we should be changed and not return to who we were before.

Yes, we will get through this, but the question to ask is how will I be better because of covid19? What will I do different? How can I be a better citizen and neighbor?

So many stories of kindness and love shining through these tough times. Be the church by being the hope as you go…

be.the.light

If you have a story of kindness or have heard one, please comment and share. Thank you!

© 2020 be.the.church aclearberry all rights reserved