53 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 2-25-22

  1. Responding (late) about yesterday’s discussion about cremation, especially for Michele, who is also Missouri Synod Lutheran. I was our circuit’s delegate to the last national convention in 2019, whiere this was discussed. The conclusion was that it isn’t a sin, isn’t ideal, but may be necessary in some situations.

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  2. Morning all….Morning Chas!
    What is Liz’s focus of study Aj? She has a delightful imagination with her set up in her dollhouse! What are her dreams? ♥️

    We haven’t quite decided what path our dead bodies will take yet. Cremation would sort of make sense for us as we neither one desire a funeral nor memorial service. Some would say that is selfish for the living left behind but that is our resolve.

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  3. Thanks, Linda.

    One of the things we like about the LCMS is the focus on Scripture and the sense of Christian liberty–based on and out of Scripture, alone.

    You read “life” through the Bible’s teachings, not your personal Bible interpretation through your life events.

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  4. Curious why you wouldn’t want any service, NancyJill, if you care to share.

    Very cute bedroom scene above. I so enjoy peeking into the doll house and cafe made by my folks. This bedroom reminds me of one for a child in the dollhouse I have. A grandpa or dad doll is in it with a little one perched on his back. They seem to be playing horsie and having a good time. I know it represents my dad. Most of the rooms or houses made have things in them that speak of the lives of the creator/s. I am sure that is true of the room above. I am sure that speaks of our Creator. I just started Romans today, so it all fits together. 🙂

    I also want Chas to know I pray daily for him to finish his race strongly. Good morning to him and you all.

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  5. This article is in reply to the one shared yesterday about the funeral directors finding strange clots in the bodies of those who have been vaccinated.

    “Abnormal clots were found in COVID-19 victims “long before vaccinations were available,” said licensed embalmer Monica Torres, of NXT Generation Mortuary Support in Phoenix, “and it is not uncommon to find dark blood clots in any deceased, not just COVID persons, who have been stored in refrigeration for a long period of time before embalming.”

    The National Funeral Directors Association, a U.S. professional organization, told PolitiFact that embalmers in its network have noticed similar abnormalities in COVID-related deaths, but among both the vaccinated and unvaccinated. . . .

    Embalmers typically do not know the vaccination status of those they are embalming, according to the experts PolitiFact spoke to. “It is not on the death certificate,” said Dr. Hari P. Close, national president of the National Funeral Directors & Morticians Association.”

    https://www.poynter.org/fact-checking/2022/theres-no-scientific-evidence-that-vaccines-are-responsible-for-strange-blood-clots-observed-by-embalmers/

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  6. Good morning, again. exercise is done, breakfast has been served. And nobody is around to eat it. But that is okay. It is French toast for the chore doers and they eat it hot or cold. And for twenty, who likes her breakfast on the window ledge promptly at eight (unless she gets up earlier, then rants about no breakfast) though she rarely gets up before eight thirty or nine or nine thirty, has her breakfast served at seven. I put it on the window ledge as we have had to take out all furniture as she kept breaking it. Anyway, she has said repeatedly that my cooking is disgusting so I serve her prepared stuff like cereal with a cup of milk to pour in or drink, her special dad bought sugar yogurt though yesterday she said that was Ewwww which is a code word we have agreed on to say she does not want it anymore rather than ranting about how disgusting something is. She gave the code word for a bowl of ice cream a few days ago. That means she does not want any more ice cream. We do try to work with her.

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  7. Picky eaters at mumsee’s place. No furniture?

    Happy Friday, all.

    I’ve fed the cat (3 times), let the dogs out (3 times counting 2 overnight forays), showered (I’ll never accept the idea that one doesn’t need to have a hot shower AND wash their hair every day) and caught up with work emails. Staff call comes in 40 minutes.

    Threw in a quick load of cold-wash laundry.

    No breakfast yet — probably yogurt — but I am enjoying a glass of high-pulp OJ.

    Grocery shopping will need to get done tonight or tomorrow (probably tomorrow).

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  8. I had planned to sit out on the porch and read the next to last chapter of the small book, Eat Your Bible, which I received at church last week. I had on a lined windbreaker over a short sleeve t-shirt. I pulled the hoodie over my head. I still felt chilled and headed back inside. There at the door was Miss Bosley’s “Toy,” her separation anxiety comfortor. She is very happy it was too chilly outside for reading. She is back in my/her lap and life is good (until I get up and disturb her).

    Yesterday the temp reached 78° but did not break the record of 79°. Glad I sat out and read for a bit then. Before long biting insects will discourage me from sitting out for long.

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  9. Dreaming IS always in fashion! Thanks, AJ. I like that. Such a cute room in the doll house.

    I hope Liz is feeling better these days. I know she must miss y’all and her guy so much. It’s such a wonderful arrangement but probably makes for a double case of homesickness.

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  10. My friend, Karen, told me that when the pastor of my current church called and left a message for her about joining the church that he said a statement of faith would be required. He also indicated it was basically not a church for newbies just beginning the Christian walk. The recorded message was a complete turnoff for her as far as wanting to engage further. That is just another thing that makes me want to run away from where I have been. My friend was treated poorly but did not tell me all until I told her I would be leaving there.

    When the old church shut down and the new one began, none of the members, such as myself, from the former church had to do a statement of faith. We were automatically received in as members, so none of us were aware of how this pastor approached perspective members.

    The church I hope to join requires attendance at a luncheon where membership will be discussed along with hearing church history. I did attend something like that at my current church, but in the role of a host for the prospective members. It was a nice informal time to learn. I was on the Communication Team at that time so think that was why I got asked to participate. The Communication Team has since been deleted.

    I don’t mind at all doing a statement of faith, but I am not sure how detailed it should be. I may ask Wesley about it since he has experience with such things.

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  11. Fourteen just got in from breaking the water for the horses. It is seventeen out so even though fifteen watered them this morning, it was well frozen two hours later.

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  12. Mumsee, the importance of church membership has always been stressed in these parts. It is difficult to imagine being in a place or time when that is not the case. I suppose it is freeing somehow, but truly for me, I do not like this feeling of being between churches. I have the feeling of being out in the wilderness or drifting at sea. I am glad you have never experienced that feeling. Changing churches for me is similar to a kind of divorce. So glad you never feel that struggle.

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  13. Janice – I thought you had decided on the new-to-you one. Is that still up in the air?

    As for what that pastor of your old church told Karen, that is horrible! Every church should be open to newbies. The oldbies (how do you like that word? 😀 ) are supposed to disciple the newbies.

    Not quite the same thing, but my mom had gone to the church that I now attend one time back when Hubby and I were still attending a church in a different town. At the end of that service, Mom told the pastor something about wanting to get serious with her faith, or get involved in a church, or something along those lines.

    Then, for some reason, she wasn’t able to attend for a couple or few weeks. (Or maybe she was able, but was nervous or anxious about it.) At the end of that service, rather than welcoming her back, and saying it was nice to see her again, the pastor said something like, “So I guess you weren’t that serious after all.”

    That hurt and humiliated her. No surprise that she never went back again. In fact, a few years later, when Hubby and I began attending that church (my current one), that pastor was long gone, and the church was very open and welcoming, but Mom refused to come because of that former pastor. That made me so sad.

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  14. Janice it is difficult to be in between churches…we have been there a few times and our heart’s desire is always to plug in to where the Lord would have us. I know that is your heart as well. We have been actual “members” of a Baptist church, Alliance church and a non denominational church. We have gone through background checks and submitted our statement of faith in order to teach Sunday School and be Small group leaders. We have never had to submit a list of our sins before our coming to the Lord. Honestly I find that part a bit unsettling to be required….

    As to why I do not want a funeral service I suppose I just don’t want to be fussed over. I certainly don’t want anyone looking at my dead body. If my kids or friends want to gather together to talk about my passing I suppose they could do that on their own.
    When my brother in law’s wife passed away last year we fully expected there would be a service and we planned to drive to FL to attend. However sis in law was cremated and they only had a small gathering at the mortuary with the three kids and the grandchildren. I suppose sis in law felt the same as I do. We know she loved our Lord and is in no more pain and with the Saviour….it is well..

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  15. My thoughts on funerals and cremation.
    Cremation is the cheaper thing to do these days with a full on embalmed body, casket, and burial costing $30,000 or so.
    I believe that my God can raise my ashes has well as He can my rotted or embalmed flesh.
    Having said that, I don’t know what I would do now.
    I do know that somehow not having my father’s body at the funeral made it “un-real” to some. It was like he just disappeared.
    The funeral isn’t for the dead. It is for the living. It is a way for them to process what has happened and their loss. Quite frankly, I think it is selfish NOT to have some sort of service of remembrance, but that’s me and all are free to do as they choose.

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  16. So is “Statement of Faith” being used as “testimony”?

    I’d keep it short and basic. 🙂

    While it was a little intimidating, I appreciated the way our Presbyterian denomination handled membership requests, by meeting with the elders. They primarily look for a credible profession of faith in both adults and children old enough to be taken in as communicant members (on theirs and their parents’ request).

    Those professions of faith are fairly simple; a basic understanding of the gospel and one’s own response to it at a particular time in their life.

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  17. Morning all. Still feeling sick with aches and pains and a fever.
    I keep expecting to wake up and be well. But I guess it just has to take its own time.

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  18. The list of sins is not a part of the faith statement at all. I must have somehow miscommunicated on that point. The first part of the faith statement begins with saying how you lived before salvation or something along those lines. At first I thought to myself, I wasn’t that different . . . I was a pretty good person. Then I decided that did not sound like I was saved if I had not transformed. So I took a second deeper look by starting to list out former sins and then I got the real picture from which to base what I write in that section. I can’t say like Paul, “I was chief of sinners.” But I am still struggling with how to word it succinctly and accurately, not in an irreverant way. I thought I could say that before salvation I had broken quite a few of the Ten Commandments and felt no real guilt because I did not think God took sin seriously. That has been one thought I’ve considered.

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  19. Kizzie, yes, I have decided to join this new to me church, but just in case something falls through on their side in accepting me, I don’t yet count it a done deal.

    The opportunities to be involved with a large church are numerous times a week if one is inclined. I think that is why it can almost seem like a marriage, and of course the church members as a group are the bride of Christ😀

    There is the situation of the two churches being in close proximity so the pastors more than likely know each other. It shouldn’t be an issue, but I have noticed vindictiveness toward a couple who left in the past with an unnecessary bad report given to say thd problem was them and not the pastor. One has no control over what others may say behind one’s back.

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  20. Isn’t the idea to so hate our own sin so thoroughly before God that, indeed, we can all claim to be the “worst” of sinners?

    Even one sin (and we all have many more than that) puts us starkly as an enemy of God, our only hope being the salvation of Jesus.

    Another point our elders made during my interview — they asked if I felt whether repentance was a one-time act or something we needed to do continually.

    Oh, continually, most certainly. I’d already experienced and figured that one out!

    The longer I’m a believer, the more aware I am, actually, of my past and present/ongoing sins — attitudes, behaviors, words, thoughts. And I see them as much worse than i did before.

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  21. With any church we have joined we have always spoken with the Pastor or and Elder beforehand. They asked questions of us and we them. There would be a written out “statement of faith” the we could read over and sign. At one church there was the statement of “baptism in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues” that we could not agree with. We spoke with the Pastor and he said that was not a deal breaker and that we could teach Sunday School.

    I am thankful that we each can make our own decisions concerning our arrangements upon our death. Those who know me well know my heart. They know I am a giver and have not a selfish bone in this old body. They know I don’t like to be fussed over. They trust my walk with the Lord. They will all be good with my decision because they love me.

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  22. Janice, they take it seriously everywhere I have attended. But I believe I am a member of the Church and I do not have a need to vote in a local church because I have little interest in what they are voting on. If something comes up that I care about, I can talk it over with my husband or other church members.

    And when we have had to change churches, at least eighteen times over the years, it has been sad to leave friends but knowing we will meet again and that is our chosen life makes it easier. And finding a new church is actually a lot of fun as I do enjoy learning how others worship the same God and what He is doing with them.

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  23. Funerals: as a very non social person, I would prefer not to have a funeral. A small memorial service with a gospel presentation would be fine. But my number of friends and acquaintances is rather limited and I do not understand why people would want to attend the funeral of somebody to whom they had never spoken in all the time living in the same area. Not that I am not well known as “the religious lady with all the children”.

    On the other hand, my husband is quite gregarious, though less so as he ages, and it would be for him. And quite a few would come to show him support. I suspect he is more like me these days though and would prefer not to do that.

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  24. dj, I do sort of understand what you are saying about hating our sin so much that we feel like the ‘chief of sinners’ because had we been the only person who ever lived, it would have been our sin that Jesus had to die on the cross for. But I feel so far removed from the person I once was that it is even difficult to remember how I was in that former life. I have received forgiveness from God, and I have forgiven myself because that person knew no better. So to revisit how I once was seems to bring on thoughts of condemnation. I don’t want to dwell on the past. I want to be forward thinking as our God is. “Go and sin no more.”

    I was told that the statement of faith could be talked out or written. Being in the habit of writing, I choose to do that.

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  25. Jo, I’m sorry, that sounds miserable. Did you say you were tested or not?

    In the case of omicron, if that’s what you have, seems like I’ve read that it starts slow but then builds before fading out — so the mid-point might be the worst. Fever isn’t associated as much with this variant as others, but can occur.

    Fortunately, it seems to stay in the upper respiratory system, nose and throat, and doesn’t affect the lungs like those earlier variants did — and which is more serious when it comes to complications.

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  26. When we confess our sins, as Corrie ten Boom likes to say, we drop them into the deepest part of the sea where a sign says, “No fishing.”

    To have to “reconfess” my sins means I have to dredge them up out of that sea. But who remembers them? God doesn’t.

    Praying for wisdom, Janice.

    xoxox

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  27. True, we don’t ‘reconfess’ our sins — although many of the same patterns crop up just with new examples attached to them.

    Each day there will be cause to reassess and review and repent anew, to stay current. Because we’re human. 🙂

    Our sins are no longer held against us once they are confessed and we receive God’s forgiveness. But he also knows us better than we know ourselves, which should be a comfort as well — he knows our weaknesses and the areas that seem to trip us up more often than not. He continues to love and cherish us, protecting us, but also disciplining us when we become stubborn.

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  28. This sanctification thing we go through, I have thought of it as peeling away layers on an onion. I recognize a sin and correct it with some effort and it is truly gone and done with forever. That gonr, I recognize some other smaller seeming by human standards sin to work on correction until it is gone and done with. And so, thed process continues throughout life. Does anyone else see it like that?

    Michelle, I spoke tonight with a friend who recently joined at the large church where you spoke and she had to do a statement of faith there. Maybe it is a thing to do in Atlanta? Perhaps it relates to the legal climate of these days that churches have to vet people more carefully?

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  29. Most churches that have a membership roll require some form of a statement of faith. It can be a testimonial letter or just a recommendation from a previous pastor. We’ve only been in one church that had such a roll. We didn’t “join” but attended more than some of the members.

    In the churches we know here, regular attendance means you are a “member”, though there is no official roll. Our belief is that any Christian who is a member of the universal church is also a member of the local church.

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  30. Our basis for local church membership (within the universal church, of course) is the accountability factor.

    I think church membership rolls have been the norm until fairly recently with the advent of the mega-church movement and independent churches that have separated themselves from larger bodies, mostly?

    Yes, there is growth, though sometimes it’s in fits and starts, not always that reliably consistent and “always” progressing at a full forward pace.

    At least that’s my experience. Periods of limping but still moving forward, if slowly and inconsistently.

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  31. It’s probably just referred to and practiced differently (statement of faith, etc.). Mine was a personal interview with the elders, others present written forms or statements or confess christ verbally before the church.

    When we take in new members, they also stand in front of the congregation and answer 5 questions (but this is done after one has met with the elders):

    * Do you believe the Bible, consisting of the Old and New Testaments, to be the Word of God, and its doctrine of salvation to be the perfect and only true doctrine of salvation?

    * Do you confess that because of your sinfulness you abhor and humble yourself before God, and that you trust for salvation not in yourself but in Jesus Christ alone?

    * Do you acknowledge Jesus Christ as your sovereign Lord and do you promise, in reliance on the grace of God, to serve him with all that is in you, to forsake the world, to mortify your old nature, and to lead a godly life?

    * Do you agree to submit in the Lord to the government of this church and, in case you should be found delinquent in doctrine or life, to heed its discipline?

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  32. My husband pointed out at dinner that church membership can protect the church from non-believers taking over membership and selling the assets to pocket them.

    Which is what happened to our CT Anglican church—where the congregation didn’t own the building and the diocese took over and sold it. 😦

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  33. My husband pointed out at dinner that church membership can protect the church from non-believers taking over membership and selling the assets to pocket them.

    Which is what happened to our CT Anglican church—where the congregation didn’t own the building and the diocese took over and sold it. 😦

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  34. That is a good point, Anon. Although, anyone wanting to do that can lie. And they can have their whole family or group lie. It has happened. There was a church in the northwest taken over by some who were really adherents of an Eastern religion. They just slowly worked their way onto the board and took it over.

    If I remember correctly, I had to make similar promises to what DJ shared. There were new membership classes and then a group joined at the same time answering to the statements given. If you moved to another church in the same synod, you could just transfer your membership. We have never joined the church we are currently in, so cannot vote.

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  35. There’s no scripture for or against membership rolls, and I, like mumsee, don’t agree with the idea. That said, if we had stayed at the church in Iowa that had the roll, we would have joined it, just so they would stop referring to us as “regular attenders”, as if we were 2nd class Christians. At least that church recognized our believers’ baptism and wasn’t going to make us be baptized again, like roo many other churches do.

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  36. I talked to a friend with covid and they have all of my symptoms. So that makes me feel better as you never know what is happening. hoping that I am on the mend. she says after having another nap.

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