Perfect Peace

I hope you enjoyed a wonderful and blessed Christmas. Ours was quiet and peaceful, something I sorely needed this year because of so many reasons. I didn’t want to leave you all just hanging but I need to take some time to myself this week.

I am in the beginning of trying a new medication that is making me feel horrible right now but apparently that is typical for this—to feel worse before you feel better. I am holding on to the hope that this one will work for me but the painful reality is trying to tell me otherwise as I wait.

Here’s a little something for you as we finish out 2012. I know it is more of a spring theme but Isaiah 26:3 is one of my life verses and the sight of all these gorgeous tulips make me feel peaceful.

Isaiah26-3

Beloved, I pray for all of us to have this “perfect peace,” the kind that can be found in Jesus Christ alone.

AnnaSmile

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We Long for YOU

I saw this on Facebook a little while ago. I love it so much that I just made it my desktop wallpaper. Here’s the link to this particular wallpaper at Crosscards.com in case you want to do it too.

Merry Christmas!

Is33-2

Lord, be gracious to us;
    we long for you.
Be our strength every morning,
    our salvation in time of distress. 

—Isaiah 33:2

AnnaSmile

You Will Rejoice

You Will Rejoice

Rejoice-Candle

Therefore you too have grief now;

but I will see you again, and your heart will rejoice,

and no one will take your joy away from you.

—John 16:22

This year has had its ups and downs, but then when doesn’t it? That’s life here on earth!

Rick and I still love living here in northern Arizona and are thankful for our 14 years of marriage, which we just recently celebrated. Every year we see God at work in us, bringing us closer together as we mutually rejoice at His presence in our lives. No matter what is happening, we have grateful hearts for the One Who leads us in life and in our marriage.

Christmas is a time of great joy as we meditate on the birth of our Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ, and what His humble birth means to us. We’re surrounded by sights and sounds of the season everywhere we look.

Are we able to feel and express that joy? Or are we despondent in spite of seeing Christmas trees bedecked with lights and ornaments, surrounded by holiday aromas of pine, vanilla and cinnamon?

We may happily look forward to being surrounded by family and friends, but that happiness may give way to discontentment because illness will not allow us to decorate as much as we used to, or bake Christmas cookies, or wrap gifts, or cook up a fabulous Christmas feast. Maybe this year has been filled with financial problems and there is very little to make a Christmas for our family.

Too many of us may be stuck dwelling on past Christmases when everything seemed perfect. We had enough money to buy gifts for family and friends. Our health was good. Perhaps we were whirlwinds of activity as we prepared that “perfect” Christmas for our families to treasure.

However, our true joy is not in the trappings of the Christmas season, but on what this season represents. We celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, who came to earth as a human being in order to experience everything we do so that He could completely understand what we go through. He knows our sorrows and burdens. He appreciates how difficult it is to live on this earth.

And He is with us every single step of the way.

Emmanuel-GodWithUs

Beloved, Jesus did not lead a trouble-free life. It cannot have been easy to know that He was born to die such a horrible death on the cross. But he willingly did so as the punishment for our sins so that we can have the chance to live with Him forever.

True joy is based on the fact that Jesus did indeed die on that cross for us. The blood He shed there paid the price for our sins. And three days later, His resurrection from the dead proved that death no longer has a hold on us… if we only believe on Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord.

Without Jesus in our lives, happiness comes from our circumstances. Any negative experience, however minor, can shatter that happiness as quickly as snapping our fingers.

On the other hand, we can possess true joy regardless of our trying or seemingly hopeless situations—as long as we keep focused on the Reason for this season. Life may be difficult now, but take heart! Someday God will turn our “mourning into joy and will comfort [us] and give [us] joy for [our] sorrow” (Jeremiah 31:13).

Look up, Beloved! Trust in the only Way to a truly joyful heart: Jesus!

Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

—Philippians 2:5-11

Much love and blessings from Anna & Rick

Rick-Anna05192012-sm

Words from a Father who lost his daughter in COLUMBINE 12 YEARS AGO!!

Ever since last week’s Newtown tragedy, I’ve been praying for the families of those killed. I’ve wanted to express how this whole thing makes me feel but could not come up with the right words because I thought there were no words for such a horror. A few minutes ago I read this and knew I had to share it with you.

This post is from http://ronbigblackgarrett.wordpress.com/2012/12/17/words-from-a-father-who-lost-his-daughter-in-columbine-12-years-ago/. Please take the time to read this and then share it!

Words from a Father who lost his daughter in COLUMBINE

12 YEARS AGO!!

Posted: December 17, 2012 in Articles, Constitution, Founding Fathers, Freedom, government, Liberty, Politics, Religion
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Guess our national leaders didn’t expect this. On Thursday, Darrell Scott, the father of…

Rachel Scott, a victim of the Columbine High School shootings in Littleton, Colorado, was invited to address the House Judiciary Committee’s subcommittee. What he said to our national leaders during this special session of Congress was painfully truthful.They were not prepared for what he was to say, nor was it received well. It needs to be heard by every parent, every teacher, every politician, every sociologist, every psychologist, and every so-called expert! These courageous words spoken by Darrell Scott are powerful, penetrating, and deeply personal. There is no doubt that God sent this man as a voice crying in the wilderness.. The following is a portion of the transcript:“Since the dawn of creation there has been both good & evil in the hearts of men and women. We all contain the seeds of kindness or the seeds of violence. The death of my wonderful daughter, Rachel Joy Scott, and the deaths of that heroic teacher, and the other eleven children who died must not be in vain. Their blood cries out for answers.”

“The first recorded act of violence was when Cain slew his brother Abel out in the field. The villain was not the club he used.. Neither was it the NCA, the National Club Association. The true killer was Cain, and the reason for the murder could only be found in Cain’s heart.”

“In the days that followed the Columbine tragedy, I was amazed at how quickly fingers began to be pointed at groups such as the NRA. I am not a member of the NRA. I am not a hunter. I do not even own a gun. I am not here to represent or defend the NRA – because I don’t believe that they are responsible for my daughter’s death. Therefore I do not believe that they need to be defended. If I believed they had anything to do with Rachel’s murder I would be their strongest opponent.”

“I am here today to declare that Columbine was not just a tragedy, it was a spiritual event that should be forcing us to look at where the real blame lies! Much of the blame lies here in this room. Much of the blame lies behind the pointing fingers of the accusers themselves. I wrote a poem just four nights ago that expresses my feelings best.”

Your laws ignore our deepest needs,
Your words are empty air.
You’ve stripped away our heritage,
You’ve outlawed simple prayer.
Now gunshots fill our classrooms,
And precious children die.
You seek for answers everywhere,
And ask the question “Why?”
You regulate restrictive laws,
Through legislative creed.
And yet you fail to understand,
That God is what we need!

“Men and women are three-part beings. We all consist of body, mind, and spirit. When we refuse to acknowledge a third part of our make-up, we create a void that allows evil, prejudice, and hatred to rush in and wreak havoc. Spiritual presences were present within our educational systems for most of our nation’s history. Many of our major colleges began as theological seminaries. This is a historical fact. What has happened to us as a nation? We have refused to honor God, and in so doing, we open the doors to hatred and violence. And when something as terrible as Columbine’s tragedy occurs — politicians immediately look for a scapegoat such as the NRA. They immediately seek to pass more restrictive laws that contribute to erode away our personal and private liberties. We do not need more restrictive laws. Eric and Dylan would not have been stopped by metal detectors. No amount of gun laws can stop someone who spends months planning this type of massacre. The real villain lies within our own hearts.”

“As my son Craig lay under that table in the school library and saw his two friends murdered before his very eyes, he did not hesitate to pray in school. I defy any law or politician to deny him that right! I challenge every young person in America , and around the world, to realize that on April 20, 1999, at Columbine High School prayer was brought back to our schools. Do not let the many prayers offered by those students be in vain. Dare to move into the new millennium with a sacred disregard for legislation that violates your God-given right to communicate with Him. To those of you who would point your finger at the NRA — I give to you a sincere challenge.. Dare to examine your own heart before casting the first stone! My daughter’s death will not be in vain! The young people of this country will not allow that to happen!”

– Darrell Scott

Do what the media did not – – let the nation hear this man’s speech. Please send this out to everyone you can!!!

Tidbit Tuesday

To continue the fact that I adore all things pink, let me add today that I also ♥ plaid! And not only plaid, but pink plaid! So let me share a couple of things I have that are a combination of both:

So there you are! Just a little something more about me.

AnnaSmile