Wednesday, 29 August 2018

When Can I Trust Him? - A Dose of Encouragement


Fred never asked me to marry him!

He never got down on one knee and produced a sparkling ring in a little purple box.








He never planned a day out beside a beautiful waterfall or wrote a bunch of short letters to guide me to a certain place so that he could ask me that specific question.

He didn't contact his mother and father and ask them to keep an engagement ring safely hidden until a special birthday would arrive.

He didn't contact his future mother-in-law to show her the ring he was planning to get.

No Fred never did anything like that.


He didn't even take a specific time to ask me to marry him.


With Fred it was just taken for granted.


When Fred talked about the future there was no "IF" but just the "WHEN".








You see Fred was sure that he loved me and he was also sure that I loved him so there didn't need to be an "IF we get married" it was automatically "WHEN we get married".

And me?
Well I just agreed with him because I loved him and I knew that he loved me.

Fred had decided he loved me before we even started going out together and in his mind that would mean there would be no-one else for him and it would just be the natural thing for us to get married.


We did not have that

"getting down on one knee in a beautiful surrounding with a friend hidden somewhere ready to step forward and take a picture at just the right moment as the ring is produced"

moment to be forever remembered.


No we had none of that and as our kids know Fred is often reminded of the fact that he did not propose to me at all!

Instead he just started talking about "when we get married".

Well of course that is all in the past and we did get married 41 years and two days ago.  The "WHEN" happened and Fred had been true to his word there was no going back on what he had said.

I have always been able to trust what Fred would say because if he meant something he said it and stuck with it but if he wasn't completely sure then the "IF" would be used.

And because of the proof I have already seen with Fred, I know that I will also be able to trust him in the future.  Just as the "I have trusted Fred" and the "I am trusting Fred" led me to say "I Will" 41 years ago.


These qualities that I see in Fred are the qualities that I have also seen in God.






God doesn't start talking about "IF" something will happen in the future, it is all "WHEN" with Him.




All God's promises are not statements about how something might come to be but instead each one is a definite fact.





God has proved himself throughout Scripture and Time so that we can trust in all that He says.






God has never promised anything He did not intend to do, He always speaks the truth and will never go back on His Word.






This means we can trust Him forever.


Some people will use the phrase "IF and WHEN....."
But does that even make sense?
I would not be inclined to trust in anything that followed those three words.


This means we can trust Him forever.


With God we trust

the "I Have"  







& the "I Am" 





& the "I Will"








We have trusted in Him, we are still trusting in Him and we will continue to trust in Him.


Throughout our lives together Fred & I have enjoyed the "Our Stories & His Stories" because we have trusted God and shared our lives with God.






Sunday, 26 August 2018

Sunday Scripture - 2 Timothy 1:7


Sunday Scripture is just simply a thought or two on a Bible verse that may have struck me afresh or maybe for the first time or has always been special to me.


Today I am looking at 2 Timothy 1:7





Looking at verse 6 of this chapter we may be tempted to ask if Timothy had a fear of rejection in the use of the gifts or had he been hurt in some way in the past and was now timorous of exercising the gifts again.

Perhaps this was not the reason Paul felt he had to specifically write this, it could simply have been that Timothy had not made a conscious effort to be seeking to be used by the Spirit or he had let the gift lapse?

But then we read verse 7  and we do seem to have the indication that there was a worry or fear of some kind holding Timothy back.


Remembering that God is not going to give us something that is bad for us we can agree that He is not going to put fear into our lives but power, love and a sound mind instead.


Then that would lead us to 

"What gift was Paul referring to?"


If we simply looked at verse 7 on it's own would we come to the right meaning?

As usual the verses in this chapter should be read together to give the right context

when I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also. Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God,


Verse 5 points us to the faith that Paul had witnessed in Timothy and we can presume that Paul was not mentioning this without a reason.

Verse 6 points us to the fact that Timothy has a gift from God and he is responsible for how he uses that gift.

Verse 7 points us to what God has given to Timothy which reminds him of how he has been equipped by God.

Look at the order of these three things:

  1. Power - to combat fear and timidity 
  2. Love - to bring care for people
  3. Sound Mind - to bring clarity 


but then we must ask the question "What does Timothy need these three things for?"


To be a good Pastor 


to do the job he has been given to do


Verse 9 points us to what the people need.  The Good News of the Gospel and the building up of their faith.

Perhaps then the gift Paul refers to is one which is important for Timothy to have in order to continue to be a good pastor.  A gift that he knows about and Paul knows about but we do not necessarily have to know about. 


Can this be related to us?

Yes, we must always be equipped to do the job God wants us to do.



What has God given us?                     



What has God given us?                     The Right Spirit.

What should we give God?                 Faith.





I think this passage is not just about Timothy;
 it is about how God has equipped him and the faith he must use in order to share the Gospel.






Monday, 20 August 2018

A to Z of Places I Have Never Seen Yet! - Coffee & Conversation



I have been doing a travel series entitled  A to Z of Places I have visited and then I thought 

"What about the places I would like to visit that I haven't had the chance to go to yet?".


This of course meant I needed to make a coffee and sit and think.







So here is my list of 


A to Z of Places I Have Never Seen Yet.


Asturias in Northern Spain
(my husband worked there several times when the kids were young and I never got to go see it)

Baku in Azerbaijan  
(my husband has been there and says it is beautiful)

Copenhagen in Denmark  
(my husband worked here for a while in latter part of his career and again he never took me to see it)

Dundee in Scotland
(I have seen very little of Scotland and that needs to change)

Edinburgh in Scotland
(There is a castle there and our family like to visit castles)

Florence in Italy
(It just sounds like it would be lovely)

Granada in Spain
(I have always heard about it and now our oldest son has been there and sings it's praises too)

Helsinki in Finland  
(I have always been intrigued by this name)

Iceland  
(I have always wanted to go there and then our son did and our daughter wrote a novel about travelling there)

Johannesburg in South Africa
(I would love to see the expansive regions of South Africa)

Kenya 
(We have a friend who came from Kenya so I would like to see where she came from)

Liechtenstein  
(my oldest son has always wanted to go there so I'm copying him and we are both jealous because our son-in-law got to go there this year)

Here is a map to show where Liechtenstein is - just in case someone thought I had made it up.
It is bordered by Switzerland and Austria.


By Elevatorrailfan - This vector image includes elements that have been taken or adapted from this:  Location European nation states.svg., CC BY-SA 4.0, Link


Malawi
(my oldest son spent three months there so I would like to see it too)

Nashville in the US
(OK it's not because of the TV programme of the same name even though I loved it)

Oslo in Norway
(Would love to see Fjords and be in a very cold place that is meant to be very cold)

Piza in Italy
(Well I need to see this leaning tower)

Qatar 
(I don't really really really want to go there although my husband has been and liked it but I can't think of anywhere else for Q)

Rathlin Island in Northern Ireland
(not far from home but I can't remember ever having gone there and the wildlife is suppose to be great)

Sri Lanka
(No idea why I want to see it but it sounds like a lovely name)






Torquay
(I am an Agatha Christie fan)

US Virgin Islands  
(Who wouldn't want to go to the Caribbean?)

Victoria Falls in Africa  
(I love Waterfalls and I have been to Niagara Falls so it would be great to get to see the other major waterfall in the world too)

Westport in Ireland
(I hear it is a popular holiday location in Ireland)

Xanadu?
(Please don't tell me it doesn't exist.  😍)

Yet
(All those other places not seen yet that start with any letter because I haven't got any idea for Y.  😍)

New Zealand 
(We have been to Australia now I'd like to see it's neighbour to the south)



Have you seen these places yet?


PLUS 

Can I add in an object?

Bridge in Paris made of tubing and 3 trampolines.







Tuesday, 14 August 2018

Death on the Nile - Book Review


Disclaimer:
There is an affiliate link on this blogpost.



I am reading through the novels of Agatha Christie in the order in which they were written and writing a review on each one.








Death on The Nile



1937



Description


Agatha Christie’s most exotic murder mystery, reissued with a striking cover designed to appeal to the latest generation of Agatha Christie fans and book lovers.
The tranquillity of a cruise along the Nile is shattered by the discovery that Linnet Ridgeway has been shot through the head. She was young, stylish and beautiful, a girl who had everything – until she lost her life.
Hercule Poirot recalls an earlier outburst by a fellow passenger: ‘I’d like to put my dear little pistol against her head and just press the trigger.’ Yet in this exotic setting’ nothing is ever quite what it seems…







My Thoughts


This is the 29th book by Agatha Christie and the 16th Poirot Mystery

It is one of the best known Christie books and possibly because of that and the number of adaptations that have been produced it is not among my top Christie stories.  

As with most of her books it is very cleverly written but at one stage I do feel that I can not quite get round the intricate plot because I feel that just one strategic action is not properly explained even having read it a couple of times and having seen all the adaptations, so I do know the full details of it.

She loves villains and heroines and so do I and here you definitely have a special villain and heroine.   I do love the way we are allowed to see the concern and the disdain for them both emanating from Poirot.

We also see several other storylines running through the book some of which have no bearing on the solution of the murder and some which do, not exactly red herrings though.

It has to be noted that this is one of her books that even if it was not one of the most wellknown it still would be one that once read the victim and murderer will not be forgotten. 

There is one thing missing in this one - no Captain Hastings!



If you would like to know more about this book then click on the title or picture above.


 Here is a link to a list of her novels on Amazon
Books by Agatha Christie


If thinking of reading this book in the future why not pin this pic to go back to later.

















Sunday, 12 August 2018

Sunday Scripture - Matthew 8 v 27


Sunday Scripture is just simply a thought or two on a Bible verse that may have struck me afresh or maybe for the first time or has always be special to me.


Today I am looking at Matthew 8:27






In chapters 5 -7 of the gospel of Matthew, Jesus taught the people and they could see he spoke with authority but then he continued His ministry to them through signs and miracles in chapter 8.

It is a chapter of healings (the leper v. 1-4,  the centurion's servant v. 5-13, Peter's mother-in-law v. 14, many who were demon possessed v. 15 & 28-32) which verse 15 tells us was to fulfill the words of the prophet Isaiah.


This chapter also shows the faith that people already had in Him.  The leper, the centurion, the demon possessed as they came to Him for their miracles.   

Why?

Because of faith.

Looking back we can see that the teaching of Jesus recorded in the previous chapters stirred up faith in the hearts of those people who came to Jesus in chapter 8.

Yet then in verse 27 we read




The disciples may not even have known exactly who He was, and the people certainly didn't, but they had heard Him and witnessed His power through the miraculous and this lead to their faith.

So what excuse then is there for the people who do know who He really is?


The teaching of the Word of God and the work of God around us should stir up our faith too.



We need to stir up our faith.


What about the difficulties we have been though?
What about the difficulties we are facing right now?
What about the difficulties that will come to face us in the future?


Nothing about these difficulties should hinder our faith because we will be stirred up in our faith if we read God's Word and take heed of His miraculous deeds.


We should be able to say:


Who can this be but the Son of God!








Tuesday, 7 August 2018

5 Bargain Books for A Sweet Tooth.


Disclaimer:
There is an affiliate link in this blog post.


I'm always on the lookout for good bargain books.

Sometimes I am amazed at the titles because I think I could never have come up with a title like that - I'm not that imaginative you see.


But I have been tempted to try some that sound tasty and tempting.




Note: I am not sure how long these will be at such a good price.


Just click on the picture or title of each book to see more about it.



Sweets & A Stabbing





After a messy divorce, forty-four-year-old Amelia Harley has taken back her maiden name and decided to sell homemade cupcakes out of a food truck. With the help of her two teenage kids in picking out the name and color of her truck (pink, of course) and using social media to help spread the word, Amelia is ready to roll in Food Truck Alley.

However, a man is found stabbed to death in the dining area, and the young man from the burrito food truck next to Amelia’s is arrested. Matthew is a big, tattooed former gang member, an obvious suspect, but Amelia believes he is not the killer.










Murder & Marble Cake




Rachel Rowan yearns for a new start. So, ready for change and up for a challenge, she has decided to relocate to the beautiful coastal town of Swaddle, California to pursue her lifelong dream of opening her very own bakery! And, as a self-professed “Queen of Cakes”, she can’t wait to show the world what she can do!

Sadly, not everyone shares her enthusiasm.

While the majority of the locals are thrilled with her new Comfort Cakes Bake Shop, Rachel soon learns that the owner of a local café is determined to ruin her. Of course, business is business, and a bit of competition may even make things interesting. But when Rachel finds a dead body in her kitchen just before the Grand Opening and she is accused of the murder, she quickly realizes that this is more than a little friendly rivalry!






Brownies & Betrayal




Pastry chef Tess Crawford thought moving from Chicago to quiet Silver Springs, Arizona would simplify her life. That was before she found the body of a woman with whom she had traded heated words the previous night, left her fingerprints on the murder weapon, and came under attack for trying to clear her name. When her cheating ex-fiance shows up, intent on convincing her to come back to work for him, Tess—armed with an extra batch of éclairs—decides to take control and solve the mystery herself, with the help of friends and frenemies alike.

But will that be enough to save her when she gets too close and the killer decides it’s safer to get her out of the way?









Cappuccinos, Cupcakes, and a Corpse




Francesca Amaro moves back to her hometown of Cape Bay, Massachusetts, and takes over the family business, Antonia’s Italian Café. She spends her days making delicious artisan cappuccinos, until she stumbles upon her neighbor’s dead body. When the police discover Mr. Cardosi was poisoned, Francesca becomes a suspect. 

The victim’s son, Matty, happens to be Francesca’s old high school friend. Together, they uncover the secrets of the locals in order to find the killer in their idyllic beach town.

Includes two special cupcake recipes!









The Sweet Taste of Murder





After a scandalous divorce, Elise returns from the big city to her southern home town. As she tries to get back on her feet, she discovers she has a new friend-- a stray cat who's decided to adopt her.

Life seems to be shaping up when she trips over the body of the town playboy. He leaves behind a heap of trouble that includes missing money, missing pets, and mourning lovers, and the suspects just keep piling up.

Caught in her own drama, Elise is quick to wash her hands of it, until her best friend, Lavina, winds up as the number one suspect. 







I have bought all of these books inside the last year but haven't got round to reading all of them yet.







Disclaimer:
If buying through Amazon via the links above I get a little commission but that does not mean any extra expense to you.