Today is Wednesday, December 21, 2016. Winter solstice. Four days until Christmas!
“A sad tale’s best for winter: I have one of sprites and goblins.” ― William Shakespeare, The Winter’s Tale
Genuflect – to bend the knee or touch one knee to the floor in reverence or worship. I always thought that it was the whole movement of taking a knee AND crossing one’s self. Turns out it’s just the knee thing.
There are a lot of good choices for today’s “holiday.” Today is Short Story Day. I love short stories, especially ghostly ones.
So today is the first day of Winter. The high in the DFW area will be 67. It was 15 degrees Sunday morning. It will be 73 on Christmas, with thunderstorms. At least that’s what the forecast says.
We are having our “Secret Santa” gift giving today, at work. I think I got a pretty good gift for my person. It’s edible. Not a fruitcake. I said it’s edible. We are also supposed to get a turkey at work today. The sign says, “All CEVA employees will receive a turkey.” I realized last week that it did NOT say, “EACH CEVA employee will receive a turkey.” I’m wondering if we will have to all split one turkey.
If you add up all the gifts in The Twelve Days of Christmas, you get 364 gifts.
66 days until the first Spring Training game.
103 days until Opening Day.
Wednesday in the fourth week of Advent
Praise God from whom all blessings flow;
praise him, all creatures here below;
praise him above, you heavenly hosts;
praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost.
Psa 43:3-4 Send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling! Then I will go to the altar of God, to God my exceeding joy, and I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God.
Psa 84:10 For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness.
Luk 1:30-38 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”
And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God. And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.
(From Praying With the Psalms)
Psa 145:8-13 The LORD is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. The LORD is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made. All your works shall give thanks to you, O LORD, and all your saints shall bless you! They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom and tell of your power, to make known to the children of man your mighty deeds, and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures throughout all generations. [The LORD is faithful in all his words and kind in all his works.]
The works of creation and the “people of the covenant” all collaborate to praise the one who is worthy of our praise. “Like a theater in which sets are constructed to enhance the dramatic speech of the players, the world is designed for the drama of blessing.” We find reason for praise when we discover the purpose and design of the works of God.
“God, help me to hear the praise that proceeds from things, from mountain shapes and rock textures, star tracks and sun warmth; and then let me add my ‘little human praise’ to make a song pleasing to you (Robert Browning, ‘The Boy and the Angel’). Amen.”
A quick quote from My Utmost For His Highest: “Faith that is sure of itself is not faith; faith that is sure of God is the only faith there is.”
Father, I pray, along with Mr. Peterson, that you would help me to hear the praise that comes from your creation. Let all the rivers clap their hands, let the trees resound in glorious praise, let the mountains shout out your majesty, and let me hear it all! Then let me join in the praise that all of your creation gives to you. You are Almighty God, and you, alone, are worthy of our praise and worship!
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!
Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. John 15:4
Grace and peace, friends.