Nikki

God Rest and Other Tidings

by Nikki



                               

Dayspring Redeemed Christmas

My heart skips with each flip of the Advent Calendar and I wonder when it switched. When the act of waiting turned to scurrying. When the anxiousness of getting there transformed into wanting more time before it arrives.

As I’m lost in my thoughts, this song comes on the radio…

God rest ye merry, gentlemen
Let nothing you dismay,
Remember, Christ, our Savior
Was born on Christmas Day
To save us all from satan’s power
When we were gone astray…

How have I missed it? The archaic verbiage doesn’t help, but why have I thought this struggle of rushing was a new thing when they’ve been singing about it for more than 200 years?

If you research it, there are many discussions on what the first line really means. The word ‘rest’ is said to translate more literally into ‘keep’ or ‘make’. But it was the comma I’ve never paid attention to before.

It’s not God , Rest…we’re not pleading for it.
It’s God Rest — no comma — it’s given freely.

Friends, we’re not merry without the first part –rest– being given directly from God.

God rest. Yes, that’s what I need.

Clearly I’m no English savant, but no one will be able to talk me out of this invitation to take His yolk and discover joy.

Thank You, Father, for offering Your shoulder this Season to soak in the love You poured down long ago. I can’t think of a better way to display it than a birth of a child.

And may I never get over Your grace as You offer time and time again to save us from the enemy’s grip. Yes, Jesus, please…pull me in closer this Advent…

Friends, I’m tired of excuses. No more “too busy” for me.

We get so caught up with life we forget to live.
We get so wrapped up in giving
we neglect the greatest gift of all.

So as I sit amid the gift paper, tinsel fragments, and tape residue, I’ll slow down and write it all out. I’ll share with family and friends what this season means to me and what I’m hoping they savor all year-long.

Friends, let’s make praise our priority this Season as we declare the final stanzas:

Now to the Lord sing praises,
All you within this place,
And with true love and brotherhood
Each other now embrace;

This holy tide of Christmas
All other doth deface:

Oh tidings of comfort and joy….
Comfort and Joy.
Oh tidings of Comfort and Joy.

And how can we send tidings of comfort and joy when we haven’t filled up ourselves?

Let’s take more time with Him this Season. Let’s rest in Him. He’s offering…

How about you, friend? How are you finding rest in Him this Season? How are you sharing tidings of comfort and joy? I’d love to hear.



                               

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May I Pray for You?

Prayer

She reaches out weekly. Sometimes through email if we miss our hug at church. And when she asks how I am, I know she wants the honest truth no matter how long it takes me to get it all out. We don’t see each other as often as we’d like, but I know she lifts me up to Our Father in prayer often. And as far as I’m concerned, that’s the best kind of friend there is.

I trust her with my heart because she handles it with love and always lifts it up to Jesus for Him to take care of.

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Eyes Above the Waves

My posture corrects as its familiar tune begins. With back elongated and chin outstretched, I sing along and submit to worship. My hands raise instinctively as my soul stirs with praise.

Yes, Savior, I do find You in the mystery. I do find rest in Your embrace…

There’s a reason this Worship Song is taking sound waves by storm. It’s message portrays a feeble heart clinging with faith. Daring to be stretched for His glory; attributing where strength and peace truly come from: Our Savior. Always. And I enjoy the reminder that though my feet may fail, He is there.

Then the dreaded plea comes.

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An Offering of Willingness

pink-delight-M-001

“All whose hearts were stirred and whose spirits were moved came and brought their sacred offerings to the Lord. They brought all the materials needed for the Tabernacle, for the performance of its rituals, and for the sacred garments. Both men and women came, all whose hearts were willing. They brought to the Lord their offerings…” Exodus 35: 21-22 NLT

Friends, this was how the Tabernacle was built. Those who felt God’s calling gave their most prized possessions. Those who felt moved by the message from the Lord offered their time, talents, money, premier fabrics, heirlooms, rainy day funds — whatever they had, they gave to God.

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Already His

yellow-lily-thirds-M-002

The blue card laid between us. My best handwriting filled the lines and I turned my head slightly to gain a clearer perspective. Still, no matter how long I stared, I couldn’t figure out how to explain the depth of difficulty and utter importance this verse has on us all.

And you must love the Lord your God
with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength.
Deuteronomy 6:5

Even Jesus reiterated its importance. Matthew, Mark, and Luke kept record. So I thought it would be best to start there.

His big hazel eyes were still on mine when I asked if he thought he understood.

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The Crescendo of Praise

img_1878-sunsetjpg
The sun enters gracefully, allowing the crescent moon to descend in glorious splendor. Its slender, sickle silhouette dances over the treetops until it retreats in peaceful slumber. One by one, the stars follow suit as they blink farewell, allowing sun’s rays to burst in fortissimo as it makes its crescendo of praise.

And I’m captivated. Simply mesmerized at how the colors radiate and claim their space in His majesty. It never grow old. Each day portrays a new sonnet for I’m convinced not one sunrise is exactly the same with the way the trees sway in unison, keeping time for each songbird as they make their daily début.

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Hosanna! Now and Forevermore

palm branches

“They brought the donkey and the colt
and put on them their cloaks, and he sat on them.
Most of the crowd spread their cloaks on the road,
and others cut (palm) branches from the trees
and spread them on the road.
And the crowds that went before him and that followed him

were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David!
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!
Matthew 21:7-9 ESV

He came as predicted. (Matthew 21:4-5)

And still they did not see. For their hopes were not set high enough.

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The Mystery of Grace {A Lenten Season With Purpose}

GRACE

A Bible Scholar I am not, but as these eyes stare up at me in wide-eyed wonder, oh how I wish I were. Their question’s simple, yet after decades of claiming its truth, I still struggle with explaining it plainly. In a way these childlike hearts could understand. I’m over-thinking it, clearly, as it shouldn’t be that difficult. I cling to grace each day. Surely I can explain what it means to a group of 5 year-olds.

Her heart-shaped sequins glisten as she reiterates the question:
“So what does grace mean, anyway?”

I feel like a deer in headlights as I stare back at her long lashes and find myself quoting Romans 5:8 without really realizing why.

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