Wednesday, December 22, 2010

You can get anything you want at Alice's Restuarant......

This time of year thoughts all come to a head from deep with in me. I have always had a sense of guilt during the holidays. I have always felt just depressed by the receiving of presents. Now I love to give, but I feel bad about receiving. That could explain the prayers I have prayed for the homeless since I really started to take being a Christian serious. My very first blog on here was about a young man I met through a homeless ministry, and I really have to admit that he was there to change my perspective. My friends name is Russell. In 2008 he was 6 months old so I imagine he is 2 1/2 years old now, if he's still alive. I always think about him when the weather does some of the strange things that it will do here in NC. It doesn't matter whether it's extreme heat in the summer or the first bite of cold in the fall, it always makes me think of Russell.
Tonight I talked with the Salvation Army bell ringer as he waited for the Salvation Army bus to pick him up. He told me about how a little girl got him a cookie from the free cookie bin and did the same thing when they returned a couple of days later. He told me how that cookie from a child meant more than money to him, because she shared her heart. We talked Faith a little (you know if I'm talking, it's going to come up!) and talked about the heart of man. I didn't have any money on me that I could drop in the bucket, but I had a way to show just a little bit of love.
But ya know, how many times to I drive by someone holding a sign that states "will work for food"? Who am I to say they aren't really hungry? Maybe I'm passing by the one that really is hungry! I've really been thinking about this for the past several weeks and it just gets in my mind and works me over.
I've thought about how God has provided everything we need and many things we want, yet I repay Him by not living a holy life? How can I receive so much from my Lord and in return, Reject Him?
I stopped to fill up the old blue pickup, shortly after talking with my new friend from the Salvation Army. I had been pretty deep in thought and my heart had been praying up to this point of the night. As I stood pumping gas in my short sleeves and shorts, the cold wind blew as if it were attacking me.......but I took it as a reminder of all the good God has done in my life alone. He has protected me time and time again from the cutting winds that I would never be able to handle without Him. Just then a cute little BMW SUV pulls up to the pump across the way, and 3 teens jump out all looking to be about 17. Any of you that really know me know that I can watch someone and know more about them in just a few seconds than they would care to share. They weren't bad kids, although one did look like he wanted to be Flava Flav, they were just ungrateful. God had given them a blessing that in turn allowed them to drive this Beamer but they didn't really appreciate it. My thoughts immediately turned back to Jesus...... He came and we put Him in a barn! He taught and was persecuted. He Loved and He was hung upon a Cross to Die......... The World rejected Him, but the hearts of believers are still loving Him.
This is the time of year where we celebrate His birth. Yeah I know Jesus wasn't really born on Dec. 25th, but you know the date doesn't really matter. The only thing that matters about this Holiday we call Christmas is that Jesus Came.
I hope everyone takes time to clear their minds this year from all the frivolity and celebration to contemplate what it means for God to come to us as Jesus. Think about what it means when God comes to His people in the form of a meek and humble baby.....I think He has reached out to us as gently as possible to tell us He Loves Us! I'll leave it all with you as I re-write one of my favorite stories that Paul Harvey used to read at this time every year. I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas, and I hope God Blesses you all real good!

Merry Christmas,

Story about the Birds and the Farmer
(read annually by Paul Harvey, author unknown)
One very cold winter night, a farmer was sitting inside listening to his radio.
The Broadcaster warned that it would be deadly cold that night and to make sure all living things were protected from this weather.
Just then, the farmer heard a thump at his window.
The Farmer looked out only to see several little birds hoping around on the ground.
The farmer heard another thump, coming from that same window.
He looked again and there were the same little birds.
The radio then mentions that this could be the worst night on record, to protect all living things from this cold.
The farmer started to think about those birds and how he could let them stay in his barn for the night.
The farmer went outside and tried to sneak up on the birds so he could catch them and put them in the barn, but everytime the saw him they got scared and flew away.
The farmer didn't give up that easy.
The farmer walked over to the barn and opened the door just a little. Then he took bird seed and spread it from the door of the barn out into the yard where the birds were.
The little birds would eat the seed right up to the door, but wouldn't go in.
The farmer tried to shoo them in but they flew away.
By this time the farmer realized the effort and time he had spent trying and failing to get these birds to safety.
His heart ached at the thought that they wouldn't be safe on this dangerously cold night.
The farmer thought "I have done everything I know to do and it only scared the little birds away." "There has to be a way that I can get them to understand that I'm not trying to hurt them."
"If only I could become a bird"..........

(this is a paraphrase of what I can remember of the original)
Thanks for reading my Blog! God Bless You!