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February '16

"So he got up and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion for him, and ran and embraced him and kissed him." —Luke 15:20

Reflection:

Forgiveness is a characteristic of love—great love.

The scripture verse above describes a powerful example of an earthly father's love, reflecting our heavenly Father's love—amazing and all-encompassing. Who of us hasn't decided to go his or her own way? Who hasn't doubted, feared, distrusted, rejected, and walked away from the love of God, our Father?

Oh, to come running back into his strong arms, knowing He has received us, welcoming us home. Welcoming us because our hearts are tender and broken, destitute...ready and yearning to receive the love that was there all along!

I pray you will know and receive this miraculous and extravagant love for always.

Beverly Lewis

January '16

"But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.'" —Romans 5:8

Reflection:

The first of January signals the start of a new calendar year, a spanking-clean chapter in our lives. A new year promises second chances and fresh beginnings.

Will we take the second chance at getting it right this year, and the constant reach for happiness...for all that we wish for? Will we strive to be better at relationships, at work, at leisure...to be more attentive to others’ needs, to follow God’s ways, above all? We want to do all of these things, sure, but we seem to fall short repeatedly.

Yet, graciously, our Lord offers us hope, and once again we remember that it’s not about our doing or being. It’s really just about accepting. Simple, yet true.

So, is it possible to lay down the rope and end the inner tug-of-war of striving, choosing rather to open our hearts and embrace THE miracle: God’s ever-perfect love? He, alone, offers each of us a beautiful second chance, no strings attached.

Here’s an excerpt from my little book, Amish Prayers, which can be prayed on New Year’s Day...or any morning.

“O merciful, gracious God, Farther of eternal light and comfort, whose goodness and faithfulness are fresh again each morning, we give you praise, honor, and thanks for the lovely daylight, and also for graciously protecting us during the night and granting us gentle sleep and rest. May we now arise in your grace and love, and under your care and protection, make gainful, joyful use of the daylight. Amen.”

I truly wish for you an inspiring and peace-filled New Year 2016.

Beverly Lewis

December '15

"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.'" —Luke 1:35

Reflection:

I think we sometimes forget that the Lord Jesus was born into our world and not from it. He came to us, outside of earthly history. Jesus wasn't a man becoming God, but rather God Himself entered our sphere of existence in human form—as a newborn baby.

Yes, baby Jesus grew up to be tempted and betrayed, yet He did not succumb to sin. Nether outwardly or inwardly. Just think of that! This has baffled my mind since I was a young girl sitting in my father's church as he gave the "Christmas sermon" the sanctuary all bedecked with fluffy red and white pointsettias, and tall tapers flickering on the communion table. God came hereto us—to save the world!

So, when we're born into God's family (this is salvation, when we repent of doing things are own way and yield ourselves totally to His will), then Christ springs alive in us. When this happens, we, too, become one with the Lord. His spirit envelopes ours—Christ is formed in us. (Galatians 4:19: "My children, I am suffering birth pains for you again until Christ is formed in you.") We crave Christ's ways, His will. We look to Him in everything we do and say. We are so in love with Him, we want to live every minute, every day of the rest of our lives for Him alone.

A blessed Advent Season of Joy and Light and Truth!

Beverly Lewis

November '15

Reflection:

I was cooking breakfast one morning, and this beautiful, old hymn came on the radio. A hymn I grew up hearing, its melody—and especially the lyrics—took me back to Billy Graham's revival meetings, televised decades ago. Oh, the power, the tenderness...the love in this song!

So, I give you the words to what could certainly be part of my own testimony of faith.

Please share, if you wish. And  let us all embrace the gratitude of grace this month of Thanksgiving, dear friends!

Beverly Lewis

 

"I would love to tell you what I think of Jesus,
Since I found in Him a friend so strong and true;
I would tell you how He changed my life completely,
He did something that no other friend could do.

"No one ever cared for me like Jesus,
There's no other friend so kind as He;
No one else could take the sin and darkness from me,
O how much He cared for me.

"All my life was full of sin when Jesus found me,
All my heart was full of misery and woe;
Jesus placed His strong and loving arms about me,
And He led me in the way I ought to go.

"No one ever cared for me like Jesus,
There's no other friend so kind as He;
No one else could take the sin and darkness from me,
O how much He cared for me.

"Ev'ry day He comes to me with new assurance,
More and more I understand His words of love;
But I'll never know just why He came to save me,
Till some day I see His blessed face above.

"No one ever cared for me like Jesus,
There's no other friend so kind as He;
No one else could take the sin and darkness from me,
O how much He cared for me."

—"No One Ever Cared For Me Like Jesus" by Charles F. Weigle