What is life? What defines it?
Even the dictionary can’t describe it.
If you had to define it, what would you see?
If it was left up to me, this is what it’d be:
Life is more than writing and reading a book,
More than eating and learning how to cook,
It is more than watching movies and having fun,
More than buying merchandise by the ton,
Life is more than science, math, and school.
It is more than impressing people and being called “cool.”
If that was all life was, I’d call my life useless,
And the best things I did, worthless.
Living would not even be worthwhile,
If it were only having a money pile.
Is life living for your family or your friend?
No, life is living for the One who has no end.
Life is loving Him who first loved you,
And serving Him in all you do.
Immeasurable joy, immeasurable love,
Are gifts from our Father above.
Sacrificing for others, being called His,
This, my friend, is what life is.
This was originally published on Kingdom Pen.
God’s Word is very special indeed,
More than anything I’ll ever need.
It is a pillow of comfort to rest my weary head,
The satisfying food with which I long to be fed,
The water that quenches my strongest thirst,
The shelter that protects me from the worst,
The loving teacher who guides me to the path of light,
The law that informs me of what’s wrong and what’s right,
The candle that lights up the darkest room,
The song of joy in the midst of gloom,
The sword that pierces the stiff-necked soul,
The shield that blocks every fiery coal,
The compass that guides my way,
The jewel worth more than I could pay,
The fire that warms the coldest hearts,
The soap that cleanses my dirtiest parts,
The medicine that heals all sickness,
The helper in my weakness,
The seed that plants a fruitful vine,
The letter from the One who is divine,
It is all I long for, hope, and dream,
The very words of Him who can redeem,
These things you may know too,
But what is God’s Word to you?
This was originally published on Kingdom Pen.
“Now all this took place to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet: ‘Behold, the virgin be with child and shall bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,’ which translated means, ‘God with us.’ ” (Matthew 1:22-23)
For a few years, God walked, talked, and dwelt among us in bodily form. This was an entirely new phenomenon. Before then, God was merely a cloud of fire and whoever dared approach Him met death. But Jesus could be spoken to, seen, and touched, almost as if He were a normal human being. He seemed like an average baby to the undiscerning eye. There was no halo above His head and His parents were common folk no different from you or me. But underneath this little babe’s skin beat the heart of a Divine King.
None of Jesus’s names are as comforting as Immanuel. We can clearly see how God was with us when Christ was born, but He is with us now too. The only difference is that we can't see Him. There never has been and never will be a moment when He isn't with us. He may not dwell on earth, but He dwells in our hearts. At times we may feel as if He's left, but He hasn't. He may have have taken a few steps away, but don't worry, you're never out of His sight.
Remember this Christmas Eve that He is with us just as much as that first Christmas two thousand years ago.
Merry Christmas, everyone!
“And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.” (Luke 2:7)
The town of Bethlehem was bustling, probably fuller than it had ever been before. People were everywhere, making the place a torture chamber for introverts. Probably citizens of every class and religion were there, rich and poor, believers and atheists. It is significant that out of all these hoards, not even one noticed the Messiah’s birth. Surely there must have been at least one rabbi who had studied the prophets and would have seen the signs! But no, not even they cared. Everyone was too busy in their own affairs.
The inn had no room for Him and the world seems to have no room for Him either. They are looking extremely hard for a Savior, but not Him. All the well-trained rabbis would have known the facts about the coming Christ, yet they failed to recognize Him. The world knows much about religion and being religious, but they fail to recognize the One to whom their religion points. If they had acknowledged Him, they still would have rejected Him. They didn't want God, they wanted a superhero who would feed their gaping mouths without even requiring a thank you.
It is sad when God is in our midst yet we fail to see Him. It wasn't those in Bethlehem who recognized the King, but those in the fields. Sometimes those deepest in religion are the farthest from God, and sometimes the farthest from religion God chooses to bring the closest to Him. “Be ye quite assured that the name of a Christian is not the nature of a Christian, and that your being born in a Christian land, and being recognized as professing the Christian religion is of no avail whatever, unless there be something more added to it—the being born again as a subject of Jesus Christ.” * God is near to each one of us and I pray God will open our eyes to see that. Is there room for Him in your heart?
*C.H. Spurgeon, Spurgeon’s Sermons Volume Three (Hendrickson Publishers, 2016), 212.
“Who can make the clean out of the unclean? No one!” (Job 14:4)
It is easier to wash a hundred pounds of soot off a wedding gown than it is to clean man’s soul. Job realized the impossibility of this task, but not everyone does. Some people don't even think they need cleaned—well, I don't think pigs realize they are dirty either. “Do not suppose, my friends, that men like the gospel any better now than they did then. There is an idea that you are growing better. I do not believe it. You are growing worse. In many respects men may be better, —outwardly better; but the heart within is still the same. The human heart of today dissected, would be just like the human heart a thousand years ago.” *
However, Job’s words are not completely true; there is one person who can make the unclean clean. The heart is harder to cleanse than leprosy, but Christ can reach beyond the skin and cleanse the leprosy of the soul. I doubt there is any soul filthier than mine or Paul's—God cleansed ours and He can cleanse yours. All you have to do is come Him, knowing full well your sinfulness and inability to rid it, and you don't even have to bring the soap.
Day by day we'll soil our garments but God keeps cleansing us until eventually we’ll shine like stars.
*C.H. Spurgeon, Spurgeon’s Sermons Volume One (Hendrickson Publishers, 2016), 90.
“All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight, but the Lord weighs the motives.” (Proverbs 16:2)
All that I do is right—screech!—nope, definitely not, but sometimes I act like it. It's the thought that counts, but my inner thoughts are not always right. When I say “my drawing is terrible,” do I really mean that or am I saying that just to get praise? Sometimes I don't know why I do the things I do, say what I say, or think what I think, but God does. He knows facts about me I don't even know. My motives may be hidden to my own heart, but not to His eyes.
We think our way is the only way and that's when it's time to stop and think about what we're doing. We should assess all our actions, words, and feelings. Are our works really diamonds or fool’s gold? I need to put my motives under a microscope to determine the purity of my actions. More often than not, I usually have to dump my motives into the trash and start new. But “To confess you were wrong yesterday, is only to acknowledge that you are a little wiser today; and instead of being a reflection on yourself, it is an honor to your judgement, and shows that you are improving in the knowledge of the truth. Do not be ashamed to learn, and to cast aside your old doctrines and views, but take up that which you may more plainly see to be in the word of God.” *
*C.H. Spurgeon, Spurgeon’s Sermons Volume Two (Hendrickson Publishers, 2016), 67.
Mariposa is a self-taught artist and aspiring children's author who captures the glories of God's creation on paper. She has a Ph.D. in creativity and a master's degree in imagination.
Aberdeen is a book-eating, ink-drinking dinosaur from the createtus period. When he isn't falling into plot holes or taking cover from the volcano of ideas, he's hanging out with Dee-Dee the doodledactyl. Read full bio