Blessings in Our Lives

Blessings in Our Lives

Grandma's Special Herbs

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us“— 2 Corinthians 4:7

As we enter the Thanksgiving season, I am reminded of legacy. Thanksgiving is traditionally a time of remembering family and the blessings we have. Taking time to remember those blessings can be the challenge. We are so busy with every day life of errands and work and school that we may miss the everyday blessings that God has provided for us. Little things done today, impact the events of tomorrow and ultimately the next generation. But what are we passing on? Are we so overwhelmed with the cares and struggles in our lives that we are missing the blessings? Are the things we are passing on things that last for a moment, a season, or eternity? Are they truly treasures? Are we taking time to unearth the blessings in our lives?

“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.”                                —-2 Corinthians 4:8-9channeled-whelk

Sometimes we need to hold on to our treasure as the waves crash around us.

It is only then we realize what we are holding onto, what is deep and buried just under the sand, what comes not from ourselves but from Jesus and our relationship with Him,—- is the true treasure.

Are we passing on–how to have peace amidst the stormlove when faced with adversity…. perseverance to stay the coursejoy that comes from God that gives us strength to see joy amidst the everyday struggles and routinesgrace for the moment

To take the time to count our blessings may mean digging away the sand that is keeping it hidden and allowing the waves to wash away the rough edges to make it smooth. We may not recognize the treasure for what it is. We may only see the tip or the edge. It may appear broken and insignificant, but God sees the treasure and the blessings that is beneath. If we allow Him, Jesus has the power to slowly move away the sand and wash away the dirt and reveal the hidden treasure that was there all the time. True treasures transcend our lifetime.  True treasures lay a foundation for our children to stand on and build upon. True treasures and blessings come not from us but from what Jesus has done for us and within us. The power is from Jesus and not from us.

 

 

 

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Crystal Coast Gem- Treasures in the Sand

Crystal Coast Gem- Treasures in the Sand

cape lookout pic
My husband took this great picture of Cape Lookout lighthouse as we came up to the Island.

Cape Lookout“Your path led through the sea, your way through the mighty waters, though your footprints were not seen” (Psalm 77:19, NIV)

 

I love the beach. I love looking for shells. The Outer Banks has great shells. Whelks and whole sand dollars, sea treasures abound. As a family we planned to visit Cape Lookout and enjoy the day which included a road trip to the ‘point’. The ‘point’ is where the ocean and sound meet. It is a mixture of waves going all directions as the currents flowing in and out of the banks find their lane so to speak. My plan was to find sea treasures the and enjoy the kids all together at one time. Shells can be elusive and the waves can claim the treasures. The road trip started out great, looking at the maritime forest, the village where people lived out on the island only few years ago with no grocery store or Walmart or restaurants! They had a one room school house for the island kids.

stuck in sand
Our Driver was great, good attitude!

 

Then we hit the soft sand and suddenly stopped. We were stuck. Every one climbed out and we moved the vehicle and went a few more feet and we were stuck again. We decided to leave the trailer and take only a few to the ‘point’ at a time. Frustrated that we would not reach our goal of the elusive ‘point’, I prayed, “Ok , God for once I will enjoy the ‘now’, the journey. I will not focus on the destination but on the process. It is beautiful day and the waves and tide pools are great and the kids are having fun.” So, I hopped out and started looking down and around. There were shells everywhere, whelks galore! I was so excited.

THE POINT

Cape_Lookout_Point_-_2013-06_-_09
When ocean and sound meet, water goes crazy!

 

We were the last ones to leave the area to go to the ‘point’. When we arrived, I was expecting more sea treasures, but there were none. I asked others and they did not find any when they arrived. We wondered around to the sound side. Looking into the water, a sand dollar glistened. My son and I started wading out and more sand dollars appeared. We were so excited! Sometimes the treasures are just beneath the surface. Some times it requires moving off the safety of dry land and heading into the unknown waters to find the treasures.

CRYSTAL COAST GEM

Sometimes the struggles of the journey reap the greatest treasures. In our eyes getting stuck or delayed on our way to the destination is an inconvenience, a nuisance, a frustration, disappointment. We only had a little time on the island and my thought was we are going to spend the whole time “STUCK”. God had other plans. Sometimes, getting ‘stuck’ is part of the plan. It may be a key part of the journey that you cannot understand. God knows where the treasures are. The delay is necessary to find the treasures you want and need in your life. Keeping calm and looking for the blessings among the struggle reaped a blessed day with the kids and sea treasures as well.

cropped-10982295_672614866197934_3871620920936017058_n.jpg
OK, These are not the shells we found, but they look just like them. I forgot to take a picture of all of them together. We also found 10 complete sand dollars and a horseshoe crab shell. Our bag was full! Just like the nets of disciples when Jesus told them to go fishing. They didn’t see the fish, but the fish were there!
Crystal Coast Gems…..

Crystal Coast Gems…..

Jesus said, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.’ (Matthew 22:37, message version)

Have you ever been so busy you forgot to feel? Or, if you did take the time even if  it was 5 min, you took a few breaths and then you were off again. As you go through your daily list for the umphteenth time in your head, do you take the time to see what your heart is saying? Laundry, supper, pick up the kids, get golf clubs to golf practice, tennis racquet to tennis match, church early to set up coffee, call so and so, get landscaping quotes, make grocery list and the list goes on and on. We all face this every day. Then all of a sudden you hit the wall and everything crashes. You then ask, why did this happen? Somewhere along the way of doing, you forgot to feel. Your head crowded out your heart.

And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. Revelation 22:1

Have you ever gone on vacation and come back needing a vacation? You run the kids to  this amusement park, putt-putt, restaurant, movie, sporting event, etc. Finally you come home and realize: I did not walk the beach. I did not sit and enjoy the waves crashing. I walked, but was busy clocking my miles. I did not look at the sun reflecting on the water. As the light shines, crystals are glistening with every wave saying ‘Praise the name of the Lord, maker of heaven and earth.’ Somewhere along the way of doing, you forgot to praise. Your head crowded out your soul, your prayer of thanksgiving and praise.

Praise the LORD from the earth, you great sea creatures and all ocean depths…..wild animals and all cattle, small creatures and flying birds…. Psalm 148:10

Have you ever been to the zoo and seen the animals swinging from the trees. Or just observed your own little ‘animals’ swinging from the rafters of your own house. If you have two little boys running around, you know what I am talking about. A friend of mind, Dan Breeding, is a wild animal handler. He says that animals do what they were designed to do and they do it very well and in so doing they bring glory to God.

What were we designed to do? I am sure we have many talents and abilities that God has given us to enable us to enjoy our life our earth, but what is our main purpose?  Passion refers to your heart; prayer is your soul and intelligence is your mind. We were created to Love God with our whole being. Above all else we were created to have a relationship with God. When we try and fill that desire with anything else, we will hit the wall. We know God loves us, He sent His son to die on the cross for us because of the love He has for us. But are we taking the time to tell God we love Him? Are we holding back our love, passion, prayer, thoughts?

For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life. 17For God did not send the Son into the world in order to judge (to reject, to condemn, to pass sentence on) the world, but that the world might find salvation and be made safe and sound through Him. John 3:16,17 (Amplified)

photo from www.freepik.com
photo from http://www.freepik.com

 

Gazebo Gallery:

What were you designed to do that you are doing very well?