Grateful I Didn’t Kick The Doctor Yesterday

I receive injections in my knee trying to delay knee replacement. I will never forget the first time I had one. It was with my GP. When he started the injection, I had a reflex and would have kicked him, but he was holding my leg, so I didn’t.

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Each time I get an injection, I wonder if I will kick the doctor unintentionally. Yesterday I went to the orthopedic surgeon for an injection and thankfully I didn’t kick him. I think it helped that he has me lay down whereas my GP does it while I am sitting.

It is the minor victories like that help me keep a sense of humor about doctors. 🙂

I don’t see a doctor again until February when I go back to the rheumatologist. Well, except for the eye doctor but they don’t poke with needles, draw blood, or any other things that make doctors visits a bit unpleasant.

My previous four injections his Physicians Assistant did for me, but yesterday the surgeon did it. He also checked my knee and spoke doctorese into some dictation thingamajig. I thought about asking what it all meant, but a meme I saw explains it well. The message was:

When I was a child my parents dragged me to the doctor. Now I avoid the doctor and hope I don’t die.

So I am keeping some intentional ignorance of his doctorese. Why? Because I figure if it was really bad, he would have told me I need tests. He only gave me the injection. So off I went to return home. 🙂

Moments like that and all of the moments of living with chronic illness make me selfishly long for the return of Jesus, so I can have a new body. 🙂

But then what about all of those who need to come to know him first. That thought along snaps me back to the right mindset.

Do you like doctors? Which is worse, the doctor or the dentist?

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Why We Can Have Peace and Gratitude in any Circumstance- John Chapter 16

Jesus had revealed to the disciples the hardships they would endure. When I think of what they experienced, being put in jail, being put out of the synagogue, being ostracized, being tortured and being put to death because of their faith in Jesus and proclaiming Jesus, it greatly enhances my appreciation of the closing words of John 16.

 “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.”

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Jesus wants us to have peace in our souls in any situation and hardship in life. He gives us the peace that transcends all understanding. We can rest assured that whatever we face in this life, Jesus is with us.

The disciples/apostles did not back down in the face of what they endured because they had seen something. They saw Jesus after his resurrection. They ate breakfast with him. He showed them his scars. They knew Jesus had been crucified to death and then saw him after he defeated death.

They knew he had overcome death They knew he had overcome the world full of strife, disease, hatred, wars etc. Jesus shares his victory with us. We can be assured that we will be with him forever.

Every problem in this life is temporary. Eternal life begins the moment we trust Jesus as our savior. It does not begin when we enter heaven, it begins when we place our faith in Jesus because eternal life comes from relationship with Jesus. It is only our earthly bodies that will die someday. Our souls will live forever and one day be reunited with our bodies in the resurrection.

That why Jesus said ‘take heart’ because in him we have eternal life no matter what happens in this life. He is also with us always in this life.

If you know Jesus, how does it make you feel to know Jesus says- ‘take heart’ because he has overcome the world?

If you do not know Jesus, you can by telling him you want him in your life, want his forgiveness, and that you believe he is the savior who died for you.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Jesus Preparing Others for His Death- John Chapter 16

When we through John 16, we need to keep in mind that the things Jesus spoke to the disciples about all happened within a little over 40 days from the night he spoke with them that we read about in John 16. John chapters 14 to 16 are about Jesus preparing the disciples for his impending crucifixion, resurrection, and the coming of the Holy Spirit. Try to envision the real life drama that took place in real time for the disciples.

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In John 16:16 Jesus tells them:

 Jesus went on to say, “In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me.”

The disciples were confused and distraught by this and asked themselves questions.

What does he mean by saying, ‘In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me,’ and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?” They kept asking, “What does he mean by ‘a little while’? We don’t understand what he is saying.

Jesus was speaking of his impending death and resurrection. There is also application for us as we wait for Jesus to return. For Jesus his return is in a little while. Jesus is eternal and some 2,000 years is nothing to him. For us, it causes us to wonder where he is and when he will return.

Jesus then goes on to say.

Very truly I tell you, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. 

While the religious leaders were rejoicing over their temporary victory and others gloated, the disciples mourned the loss of Jesus because of his resurrection. Imagine their joy to see him after his resurrection.

Jesus compared it to a woman giving birth.

 A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world.  So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.

I don’t think any woman rejoices over the pain of childbirth, but they rejoice holding their newborn baby. For the disciples the arrest, torture and crucifixion of Jesus was a time of sorrow, but to see him again after his resurrection caused great joy.

Jesus shared a great truth about prayer with them.

In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.

We need to be careful and not think of this like a genie granting wishes, any wish, a person makes. The key is in Jesus’s name. If we ask in his name, it implies we are seeking his will as we seek to live for him and serve others.

Then Jesus refers to his ascension.

In that day you will ask in my name. I am not saying that I will ask the Father on your behalf. No, the Father himself loves you because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God.  I came from the Father and entered the world; now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father

The Father loves us. Why? Because we believe in Jesus. The Father sent Jesus and Jesus returned to the Father in heaven.

What wonderful news that the Father loves us. We can rejoice that our Savior Jesus is with the Father in heaven.One day Jesus will return to earth. Until that time, we have work to do here and can pray to ask God to help us along the way.

We can look to Jesus so that our times of grief and sorrow might turn to joy in due time. If we have doubts, we can remember how the disciples must have felt when Jesus was crucified and then when he was resurrected. The resurrection of Jesus gives us the victory.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

When Christians Die

This morning a celebration of life will be observed for a woman who was part of my Life Group from church. She passed away and entered the presence of Jesus on Good Friday shortly before midnight. My first thought was what an Easter celebration she had. 🙂

Her final days in hospice care provided some poignant moments. One that I will never forget was bringing some grape juice and gluten free crackers to observe communion with her, her family, and a few Life Group members. I sat near her and read scripture to her, played some worships songs, and prayed as we shared communion.

When a Christian friend passes away, I am always mindful of what Paul wrote in 1 Thessalonians 4:13 about grieving:

brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope

Even in death we have hope because of Jesus. He defeated death for us through his resurrection. The plan is already set for our resurrection which Paul wrote about in 1 Thessalonians 4:

 For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep.  For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.

When a Christian dies, our spirit/soul enters into heaven enjoying eternal glory but we also wait for that day our bodies will be resurrected. Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 5:8:

We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord.

and home it is.

So as we celebrate my friend’s earthly life, I will be mindful of the truth that she lives on in heaven and is much better off than I am at the moment. I will also remember that for Christians death is not goodbye. It is see you again.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Music Mondays- A Woman/Faithful by Amy Grant and Ellie Holcomb

Imagine watching as the man who delivered you of seven demons, welcomed you into his group of friends, brought healing to your life, and took you from outcast to member of his group, die on the cross. Imagine how you would feel.

Now picture yourself being her at the empty tomb feeling confused and distraught eyes full of tears so you can’t see straight. A man asks you, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”

You don’t recognize him because of the tears in your eyes. Then he says your name:

Jesus said to her, “Mary.”

When he says your name, you immediately know who it is.

She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” 

Then he tells you to go tell the men.

That was the experience of Mary Magdalene the first Easter Sunday morning. Jesus bestowed upon her the honor of being the first to see him after his resurrection.

I love this song which is about the experience of Mary Magdalene that first Easter Sunday.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Resurrection Sunday- Jesus Lives

The first Easter Sunday some of the women who followed Jesus went to Jesus’ tomb. The tomb was empty and two angels were there. They asked the women a question we read in Luke 24:5-7:

“Why do you look for the living among the dead?  He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ 

These women had seen Jesus die on the cross. They knew he had died. What a question-“why do you look for the living among the dead?”

Jesus defeated death for us. His resurrection is proof that when he died for our sins, it accomplished the plan of God.

Jesus lives. He is alive on his throne in heaven and one day he will return.

Because he lives, we can face the problems of this life. Because he lives, we can face tomorrow whatever it brings. Because he lives, we have hope in any situation.

Happy Resurrection Sunday to all of my readers.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Music Mondays- Because He Lives by Crowder, Johnnyswim, and Tori Kelley

This is certainly a tumultuous time that we are living in with the COVID-19 virus, tension and protests, and economic uncertainty.

The question could arise in our minds, souls, and spirits of how can we go on. It would be completely understandable to have doubts and wonder what else could arise and if tomorrow will bring any hope.

I love this song Because He Lives. It helps me to refocus on the truth that Jesus defeated death. Jesus lives. He is alive forevermore and is seated at the right hand of God the Father.

Because Jesus lives, because he defeated the worst thing that can happen to use- Death, we can face what tomorrow brings. We can face the problems of today and whatever tomorrow brings.

We can have hope in any crisis, any situation, because Jesus lives. He has all power and he loves us.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Jesus Understands Sorrow

Sorrow is a word we do not hear used much. It runs much deeper than simply feeling sad. Sorrow is defined as- “a feeling of deep distress caused by loss, disappointment, or other misfortune suffered by oneself or other” -online dictionary.

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During this time of global pandemic, there is a lot of sorrow being experienced. There has been loss of life, loss of jobs, disappointments such as canceled graduation ceremonies, weddings, and much misfortune.

Jesus understands sorrow. He experienced it the night before he was crucified. He knew what was about to happen, so he went to pray. In Matthew 26 we read:

“Then he said to them, “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.”

Jesus felt great sorrow. His agony and distress was so much that he sweat drops of blood. But he endured it because of his love for us.

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Jesus also defeated death through his resurrection. He understands our sorrows and struggles. Because of that, he is our sympathetic High Priest as Hebrews 4 says:

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”

Dear reader, we can come to Jesus in prayer and give him our sorrow knowing he understands. We can come to him just the way we are and be honest with our thoughts and feelings. We can find grace to help us.

That is so comforting to me during this time of global pandemic.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

A Morning with Worship Songs

Spending the morning listening to worship music is totally making my day 🙂

Worship music lifts my spirits so much. My morning class finished yesterday and I have a 2 week break from it. During the next 2 weeks, my desire is to stay connected first of all with Jesus and also with others.

Lauren Daigle shared a Social Distancing Version of her song Still Rolling Stones. I am listening to it on repeat right now to celebrate the fact that no matter what happens around us, Jesus has defeated death and is our eternal hope.