All of Creation

Today is December 29, 2016. Only two more days left in 2016.

Quote of the Day

“Don’t take life too seriously. You’ll never get out of it alive.” – Elbert Hubbard

Word of the Day

Lunation – the period of time from one new moon to the next (about 29½ days); a lunar month.

Today is Tick Tock Day. This supposed to remind me that the year is almost over and there are still things to do.

Well, to that, I say, “Bah! Humbug!” Along with most other people I know, I am ready to put 2016 to bed in the graveyard, where it has put so many people that have brought us joy and happiness over the years. Someone once questioned why we feel such an emotional connection with people whom we have never met. My response is that, first, I have met some of them, and, for the most part (except for Billy Dee Williams, who may have just been having a bad day), they were all very friendly and gracious.

The second part of my response, though, is that these people have, as stated above, brought us much joy, happiness, and entertainment over the years. My teenage years were highly influenced by the music of Emerson Lake & Palmer, and I honestly shed tears when both Keith Emerson and Greg Lake died this year, one by his own hand, and the other losing a battle to cancer. I was deeply saddened at the death of Carrie Fisher, whom I have met. and now, only a day later, her mother has died. Debbie Reynolds was rushed to the hospital yesterday, after possibly experiencing a stroke. Within hours, she was dead.

We shake our heads, we even shake our fists at the sky and demand for 2016 to stop taking, TAKING, TAKING! But, hesitant as I am to say this, do we really expect 2017 to be any different? Or 2018? One of my high school classmates, who happens to be a writer, penned these words in a comment on my Facebook post about Debbie Reynolds:

This is our station. People from our generation are being called home. We are making a way for the next generation. It’s sad but, really, all is well. It’s time, and this is our life for the next 20 years.

When one of our classmates responded with, “Sad, but true. I still don’t like it,” he continued waxing eloquently with these words:

You shouldn’t. You are right to not like it. It is not part of our makeup to casually dismiss their departure.

Our life here is a wonderful gift–but it’s not meant to last forever and as they depart, because the gift of life is so wonderful, we rightfully grieve their absence.

So hold the person next to you and be thankful for his or her presence. You still have this moment, which is all you are promised. Spend it well.

The bottom line is, most of these people we admire, appreciate, and in some strange way, even love, are “baby boomers.” Some, obviously, are even older than boomers. It is not really a surprise when people who are 96 years old pass away. But a vast number of celebrities, who were becoming popular in the sixties are not reaching their seventies and eighties. In other words, it’s probably not going to get better any time soon. In the words of Arnold, in Jurassic Park . . .

Now that I’ve made everyone feel all warm and fuzzy . . .

58 days until the first Spring Training game.
95 days until Opening Day.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

Psa 145:21  My mouth will speak the praise of the LORD, and let all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever.

O Lamb of God, that takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on me.
O Lamb of God, that takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on me.
O Lamb of God, that takes away the sins of the world, grant me your peace.

Psa 36:5  Your steadfast love, O LORD, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds. 

Psa 145:1  I will extol you, my God and King, and bless your name forever and ever.

(From Praying With the Psalms)

Psa 148:7-14  Praise the LORD from the earth, you great sea creatures and all deeps, fire and hail, snow and mist, stormy wind fulfilling his word! Mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars! Beasts and all livestock, creeping things and flying birds! Kings of the earth and all peoples, princes and all rulers of the earth! Young men and maidens together, old men and children! Let them praise the name of the LORD, for his name alone is exalted; his majesty is above earth and heaven. He has raised up a horn for his people, praise for all his saints, for the people of Israel who are near to him. Praise the LORD!

Praising God is a very individual thing. Each of us has a choice to either engage in praise or not. When we choose to join in the praise chorus with all of creation, “it raises everyone to a new excellence.” Individual as it is, when we join together, it is amplified exponentially.

“I don’t want to miss a note, great God, in the chorus of praise, not overlook anything praiseworthy, not forget any benefit, not slight anyone or anything in my advertisements of your glory. Amen.”

Father, along with Eugene Peterson, I desire to be always in community with those who praise your great name! Let me sing along in my loudest, clearest voice, your praises, along with all of creation. May the sound, the beautiful noise shatter all of the pretenses and resistance of those who would not join in.

Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

Grace and peace, friends.

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