58 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 12-10-20

  1. Yesterday, Donna was looking forward to December 2021.
    I hate/hesitate to tell you this, but with the elections you have just made, I suspect it won’t be as good.
    We have sold our nation.
    Sorry. That’s the way it will be.
    The media has a lot to do with this. But it will go down too.

    Sorry to lead off with such. But I can’t see anything good from the last election.
    I, in fact, do not believe it was an honest election.

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  2. Good morning, Chas. Good morning, to those who see this in the morning.

    Yesterday my memory verse was from Philippians 3:20 in the Passion Translation.
    “But we are a colony of heaven on earth as we cling tightly to our life giver, the Lord Jesus Christ . . .” It was written by Paul to the Philippians but seems to apply to true believers at all times and places.

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  3. Good morning. It appears the sun will rise this morning. Did not see the Northern Lights last night, too much cloud cover. But I am sure they were beautiful! God is amazing.

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  4. I saw the planets!

    Mr. Science: “You’re awfully excited about this.”

    Me: “I saw three planets! I talked to Stargazer! The heavens are telling of the glory of God!”

    QOD: Who took the above photo?

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  5. Too much cloud cover for us to see the Northern Lights as well, mumsee. I have never seen them as beautiful as when I was still a teen. They were green and red swirling all over the night sky. I was awestruck. I hope to see them again like that someday. The problem is that I have never been a night owl, but I am out and about even less at the time of night they are best seen. When we catch just a smidgen of God’s glory in his creation, we can only marvel at how glorious He is.

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  6. Morning! Oh that photo!! The beholding of it transports me back to childhood on my Uncle’s farm. At the very back of his property there was a fairy tale woods with a creek, a pond and the pony barn. Walking back there with my cousins on a frosty wintry day was such a delight! Memories can be so sweet and satisfying sometimes…. ♥️

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  7. Narnia in the header! Michelle, when AJ doesn’t say who took the photo, it means he did. Isn’t it lovely?

    Twenty years or so ago I flew down to see my sister and took a Greyhound from the airport to their town. It was very close to Christmas, in South Carolina, and as it turns out they were having their first “white Christmas” in a good number of years. At one point on the drive, it was late evening, not much light, but we drove through woods with snow shimmering on every tree. It was so gorgeous the image has stayed with me.

    I didn’t grow up with snow and I don’t really care whether we do or don’t have a white Christmas. In fact, ten years ago when my brother got married three days after Christmas in California, I was very happy I flew out the day before Nashville had snow on Christmas Eve to have their first white Christmas in a long time. My brother, the groom, flew Christmas Eve, and because of the unexpected snow in the South, he ended up flying from airport to airport just to be moving and eventually end up getting to his bride at 11:00 or so at night. He’s a type-A person and that trip didn’t make him at all happy. I was in weak health and very glad I had my regular flight and not hassles and variations from it.

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  8. Chas, I’m anticipating Christmas 2021 as this pandemic will, hopefully, be vanquished by then.

    The nation’s politics will certainly still be roiling miserably on, and, yes, things could be worse on that front, time will tell. But this pandemic year has held its own distinct misery and disruption — and we’re especially feeling in in our area right now where the numbers are getting so much worse than they’ve been all year.

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  9. I have been seeing Mars most nights and Venus most mornings but sadly, clouds have covered Jupiter and Saturn for some time now, in the west. They are supposed to reach their closest visual appearance about the 21 of December. They will do that again in 2080 and then again in 2400.

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  10. Chas, my parents taught us that we might someday face persecution, and they wanted us to be ready for it if it came and strong in the Lord. The Christian life isn’t guaranteed to be an easy one, and it is natural for us to fear suffering and loss–and particularly, perhaps, when there is a level of mystery involved too. (We don’t know what forms that suffering might take.)

    You have told us every morning for weeks that we are in for suffering and doom. It is good that you continue to pray for us–thank you. But I’d like to add my voice to Roscuro’s yesterday and ask that instead of discouraging us in our circumstances, you look at how you can encourage us in the Lord. Like Peter stepping out of the boat and looking at the waves, and sinking because he got his focus in the wrong place, we need to be looking at the Lord in this time and aware of His continuing love and grace. You are the eldest among us. Can you lead us in that encouragement of looking at Jesus, instead of discouraging us in what comes too naturally to us already? Thanks!

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  11. When we were in Clemson (sorry Chas 😊) we had a lovely snow but the entire area shutdown due to their not having equipment to handle such an event. I remember all the wrecks on the road and the school panicking on how to get the children home…fun times!
    Well I suppose I don’t view Chas’s views in the morning as a discouragement for us…I read it as he is concerned for us “young folk” which would spark the realization that when as those dark days approach, we had better be ready…for they surely are a coming. His “sounding the alarm” has encouraged Paul and I to be lifting our loved ones before our Lord in intercession…hoping that they too would realize the sense of urgency…we had better have our lamps filled with oil….

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  12. The final song of Habakkuk (3:16-19):
    ‘”I heard, and I trembled within;
    my lips quivered at the sound.
    Rottenness entered my bones;
    I trembled where I stood.
    Now I must quietly wait for the day of distress
    to come against the people invading us.
    ‘Though the fig tree does not bud
    and there is no fruit on the vines,
    though the olive crop fails
    and the fields produce no food,
    though there are no sheep in the pen
    and no cattle in the stalls,
    yet I will triumph in Yahweh;
    I will rejoice in the God of my salvation!
    ‘Yahweh my Lord is my strength;
    He makes my feet like those of a deer
    and enables me to walk on mountain heights!”
    For the choir director: on stringed instruments’

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  13. Cheryl, I too was raised to expect persecution. Pastor A, when I was in my teens, ventured to predict that in the next ten years, there would be active persecution in Canada. Over two decades later, there still is not active persecution. Are we sometimes made to feel uncomfortable, certainly, but not active persecution (those who claim active persecution are invariably people who deliberately provoke controversy and then whine when they get told to quit it – I once encountered one such activist who was held up as a martyr and the word arrogance immediately sprang to mind), and frankly, Christian should always feel uncomfortable with the world. The Lord has his own timing to these things, and the predictions of men of the future are seldom correct. Persecution may well come in my lifetime, but the reason I am not given to know the future is because today is sufficient. Should persecution arise, I know that the Holy Spirit will give me the words to speak in that hour. The only preparation needed is to walk in obedience today.

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  14. Another note on that front: Ten or twelve years ago I dreamed that I was in some kind of hotel (for a conference or something), and I somehow understood that somebody had tricked a lot of Christians (including a lot of my family) into signing up for that event so that they could have us all in one place and arrest us more easily. And in the dream I did get arrested, and knew that others in my family (I wasn’t married yet at the time, but siblings and/or nieces nephews) had already been arrested.

    In the dream, as I was being led away in handcuffs or however I was restrained, I began witnessing to the person arresting me. I woke up with a very mixed sense of that dream, but I also went immediately to prayer and prayed that if I ever were to suffer persecution for my faith, that I would hold strong. But not that “I” would be strong–that God would give me strength to witness for Him in such a situation.

    What is the worst future possibility: that people on this blog would someday be persecuted (maybe even martyred) or that we would be persecuted and deny Christ?

    If we are ever persecuted, it may be very, very grim. We may lose touch of people we know and love. Everything we are used to might fall away. We might lose our homes, our livelihoods, access to food, ability to gather to worship. Is it likely to happen in this generation, probably not. But it may happen in our lifetimes. But this life is a blip. As the joy of a newborn child erases the pain of his birth, so the joy of the future will make the sorrows of this life trivial. They aren’t trivial from this side, but we need to see with heavenly eyes.

    I hope we don’t face that particular sorrow and suffering. But that is a human hope, and my bigger hope is this one: If we do face suffering and persecution, may our hope be found in Christ and not in escaping suffering. Because we can face suffering by caving in and denying Christ. But Christ plus suffering brings us hope. Life with no suffering but without Christ is life without hope.

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  15. Now that you’ve settled the question of the photographer, I have another, more serious, question.

    Tell me about guilt. What’s the point, how do folks deal with it, how do you discern between true guilt and manipulation, and what the difference between true guilt and false guilt?

    Go.

    I have to make sugar cookie dough. 🙂

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  16. I would feel true guilt if I made sugar cookie dough! I would be tempting myself beyond my limits.

    As a young student in public school we were well conditioned to learn false guilt. Each time a person or small group misbehaved, the whole class got blamed and punished. The innocent assumed they must have done something wrong to receive punishment. False guilt was widely taught. When people become habitual in expecting to be seen as guilty then they begin to live up to always being a suspect. It makes people think too much about what authority figures think of them. It is not of God. It is not truth. But it seems to have been a common method of school discipline as I was going though the grades.

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  17. True guilt will point you to God.
    False guilt will point you to your failures and how unjust the world is to set you up like that.
    Manipulation? Then are you talking about others trying to make you feel guilty?
    Manipulation is something everybody does. We manipulate things and we manipulate people. It does not necessarily mean a negative thing.

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  18. My friend can feel guilty over anything and cry over thinking what a bad person she is. I told her that this year I am gifting her with not having to feel guilty and she can take my gift out and use it each time she feels guilty. She had of course expressed guilt over being a horrible friend for not letting me get her birthday present to her sooner. In the grand scheme what does it matter? I had thought of taking her a Key lime pie but didn’t so everything I gave was nonperishable. Nothing got wasted. All’s well that ends well, etc. Guilt is often used as a scapegoat for other accurate emotions.
    Sadness would have been the appropriate feeling in her case rather than guilt, IMO.

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  19. Dogs are persuasive.
    I was born guilty. You do something wrong, I feel guilty. You can look at me and tell if I am guilty of something.
    Yesterday we took Little Miss to the park to play. I was so cute to see her watch the other children until she got the confidence to play with them. Two little boys taught her to sell and buy ice cream in the “store”.
    Anyway, while we were there we were the only ones with masks on. Mr P made some comments. I asked him when we would be able to go anywhere again. He said not until probably 2022.So now I have decided we will wait until May of 2022 to take the trip based on what someone here said about the best time to see everything. I will go ahead and “give” him the trip and make the reservation. If you’re going that is the current plan.

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  20. True guilt…like Mumsee posted…will turn one towards God. Hopefully when one senses true guilt they will turn to the Father…repenting and asking for forgiveness.
    False guilt I suppose would be the “woe is me” emotion. I just couldn’t help it complex.
    My dog is manipulative…but she does it in the sweetest way and gives the most pitiful look as her chin rests on my knee! 😂

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  21. Dj Colorado is in the thick of drought as well. And they continue to allow more and more growth around here and I just don’t know where they think they are going to get water to support all the growth!! Perhaps once the aquifers go dry they may have an “ah ha” moment…but then it’s too late!

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  22. Nancyjill: “(My dog manipulates) in the sweetest way and gives the most pitiful look as her chin rests on my knee”

    Compared to my cat who starts knocking things off the kitchen counter and onto the floor if she’s not fed on time.

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  23. Yes the pic is mine. We were supposed to get snow flurries while I was out at breakfast with some of the men from church. Turned out to be a little more, so I ran home afterwards and grabbed my camera. It was quite pretty. 🙂

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  24. Oh Jo!!! Tears welling in my eyes upon seeing your post!! So very thankful the Lord has once again opened the door for you. We shall continue to pray for a smooth transition back to your second “homeland”… ♥️

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  25. Re: false guilt. I don’t agree that it is merely a woe-is-me or self-pitying kind of thing. It certainly can be, but there are also ways of others putting false guilt on a person. Roscuro has mentioned the program that her family followed when she was a teen (I can’t remember the name right now) that was quite legalistic, and IIRC, caused her to suffer from a false sense of guilt. Those kinds of things can make a person feel guilty for things they shouldn’t.

    Some loved ones can make us feel guilty for perceived faults or trespasses. We can make ourselves feel guilty when we have a heightened sense of responsibility. Abuse victims often feel guilt and shame for what was done to them.

    A former pastor’s wife, who was a close friend for many years, once told me that she would sometimes feel overcome by a sense of guilt. She learned to take it to the Lord, asking Him to clearly show her if there was something she needed to repent of, and if not, to deliver her from the feeling of guilt. God would do so every time. (Usually it was a false sense of guilt, and He would take it away from her.)

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  26. Kizzie, both Janice and Kim alluded to that. The false guilt people put on others is the bad manipulation I was talking about. People trying to make others feel guilty for things the Lord does not call sin is false guilt and needs to be addressed as you said. Take it to the Lord and ask for freedom from it.

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  27. I can see that we do have “self imposed” guilt which may or may not be false. Then again there seems to be guilt projected upon us by others…which would be a manipulation. But as Mumsee reminds us, we take it to the Lord and ask Him to remove the chains that bind us….
    We have a daughter who tried to impose guilt upon us. We obviously do not live up to her expectations. Then a flood gate opened and she told us all of the awful decisions we made concerning her life, which led to her bad decisions in life. She accepted no responsibility. She attempted to manipulate us emotionally and we did not allow her to do so. We have not spoken in almost 2 years and that is her choice. All of that to say we truly need discernment and self examination concerning it all…and always be ready to take the matter to the Lord for resolution…

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  28. NancyJill – You mentioned that daughter a while back in relation to something else. Since then, I have remembered to pray for your relationship with her to be healed and restored, as I also pray for Linda and her other son.

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  29. I often feel guilty when someone else is in a bad mood. That goes back to my relationship with my mom when I was little. I’ll try to explain more about that tomorrow or over the weekend, when I have more time. I need to get to bed soon.

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  30. Thank you Kizzie. We had made the decision after much seeking the Lord on the matter, to not give a response to her attack on us over a year ago. Of course she composed her text in such a manner that she was extending an olive branch then proceeded to list all of our failings and offenses. I do appreciate your prayers ♥️
    Interesting that you mention the guilt you have felt when someone is in a bad mood. I do the same. And I know it has been within me since childhood. My Dad would be in a bad mood often and I always thought it to be my fault. When my husband gets in a mood…I immediately sense it is my fault. I suppose I too fit into that which Kim mentioned earlier…”I was born guilty” 🙃

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  31. NancyJill, we have several of those children….if only we had raised them right. But often, when they actually grow up and even start families, our meanness becomes more caring and careful rearing of children. But not in all. For some, we will always be the bad parents who did everything wrong and none of it is their fault. Have a nice life, I say. We will not accept responsibility for their choices.

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  32. So glad for your good news, Jo.

    Michelle’s QoD: I think of the words of Paul in his second letter to the Corinthians (7:9-11):
    ” Now I rejoice, not because you were grieved, but because your grief led to repentance. For you were grieved as God willed, so that you didn’t experience any loss from us. “For godly grief produces a repentance not to be regretted and leading to salvation, but worldly grief produces death.
    “For consider how much diligence this very thing—this grieving as God wills—has produced in you: what a desire to clear yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what deep longing, what zeal, what justice! In every way you showed yourselves to be pure in this matter.”

    I suppose it good be said that true and false guilt are known by their fruit. A true sense of guilt – a sense of grief over sin – will produce fruits of repentance: indignation, fear, zeal, longing, justice. A false sense of guilt produces death, which could either be physical or spiritual or both. I know of two cases of apparently Christian men, leaders in their churches, who when caught in grievous sin, took their own lives. But it is usually more subtle – such as imposing worthless penances on oneself while failing to make true restitution.

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  33. Re: guilt and parenting….I have to remind myself that Adam and Eve had the perfect parent..God, and they still fell short. Then you have Cain and Able…still very close to God, and still falling short. And what of Jesus and the disciples? Did Jesus go wrong with Judas, or did Judas follow his own way? Enticed by the evil one? I think we all do the best we can, and our children have to make choices for themselves, and accept the consequences of those choices. I have a friend whose children have not gone the way she would have liked them to go, and sometimes laments all of the work she put in, saying that they could have gotten those results without all of the work. I think you have to rely on scripture and believe that if you raise them up in the way they should go, that they will return to it at some point.

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