Never Alone

“Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.” – Khalil Gibran
(BrainyQuote)

Today’s word of the day, from the Oxford English Dictionary, is nundination, “Buying and selling, trade; an instance of this.” So, if you buy something, have you been “nundinated?” Or perhaps you’ve been “burninated!”

Today is Jelly Bean Day! As the article begins, “Who doesn’t love a jelly bean?” Great. Now I wish I had some.

Reports started coming in right around lunchtime, yesterday. Prince had been found unresponsive in an elevator in his Minnesota “compound.” At first, only TMZ was reporting, which is hardly what I could consider a reputable news source. But by the time I went on lunch break, the major networks were running the story. Prince is dead. I’m not a huge fan, but I like some of his music, and acknowledge the genius that resided in that brain of his. I think I own one record of his, 1999, because I liked the title song and “Little Red Corvette.” In what continues to be one of the worst years for celebrity deaths that I can remember, Prince is number 46 on my list, and the third one this week. Earlier this week, Doris Roberts, of Everybody Loves Raymond passed away, and then on Wednesday, the ex-WWE wrestler Chyna was found dead. I’m not at all a fan of wrestling (quite the opposite, in fact), but I knew who she was.

We have no way of knowing what else this year will bring, but I believe that the death of Prince will probably be the biggest shock to our pop culture out of all of them, at least so far.

It’s Friday! And that normally means we get to sleep in tomorrow! And, if I feel like it, I can stay up late, playing PS4 games. Tomorrow, as mentioned earlier, the Southlake Community Band, of which I am a member, will be playing a concert at 5:30 at Southlake Town Center, as part of Art in the Square.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

(From Praying With the Psalms)

O God, save me by your name, and vindicate me by your might.
O God, hear my prayer; give ear to the words of my mouth.

For strangers have risen against me; ruthless men seek my life; they do not set God before themselves. Selah.
Behold, God is my helper; the Lord is the upholder of my life.
He will return the evil to my enemies; in your faithfulness put an end to them.
With a freewill offering I will sacrifice to you; I will give thanks to your name, O LORD, for it is good.
For he has delivered me from every trouble, and my eye has looked in triumph on my enemies.

Psalm 54

“Save me!” The most basic of prayers. The prayer at the heart of “biblical religion.” It is where our need as humans intersects with “God’s action in Jesus, whose name means, literally, ‘The Lord saves.'”

“Lord, I want this prayer at the center of my life. Everything flows from this one petition as I look to you to deliver me from both my own sins and the sins of others. Make a whole person of me in Jesus Christ. Amen.”

(From My Utmost For His Highest)

“The Light That Fails”

And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 3:18

As servants of God, we are sometimes alone, but we must be in such a state that we do not realize it. As we live our lives, “people who used to be lights flicker out, and those who used to stand with us pass away.” We must get used to this, and never feel like we are standing alone. Because, for one thing, we are never truly alone! “When ‘big’ men go we are sad, until we see that they are meant to go, the one thing that remains is looking in the face of God for ourselves.”

We must not allow anything to keep us from looking in the face of God, about ourselves, and about our doctrine. Every time we have a chance to preach or speak, we must first “look God in the face . . . then the glory will remain all through. A Christian worker is one who perpetually looks in the face of god and then goes forth to talk to people.” (Emphasis mine)

Perhaps this is one of the reasons for all of the “celebrity” deaths this year. Perhaps we are being reminded that we must focus on God and not people, no matter how “big” they are.

Father, keep my mind focused on you, in Christ. May I begin again to experience the disciplines, spiritual formation, to train my body, soul, mind, and heart in your ways, that I may stay focused on the things that matter. The world is moving on; we must move on with it. Show me your ways, that I may know you and find favor in your sight.

Come, Lord Jesus!

The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.

Grace and peace, friends.

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