Tree of Peace

Our minister played this during worship today. I thought it was so beautiful I wanted to share it. The song was adapted from a Quaker poem, “Oh Brother Man.” The rendition  below was adapted by Gwyneth Walker. Read more about Walker here.

O Brother Man

by John Greenleaf Whittier

O Brother man! fold to thy heart thy brother;
Where pity dwells, the peace of God is there;
To worship rightly is to love each other,
Each smile a hymn, each kindly deed a prayer.

Follow with reverent steps the great example
Of Him whose holy work was ” doing good ” ;
So shall the wide earth seem our Father’s temple,
Each loving life a psalm of gratitude.

Then shall all shackles fall; the stormy clangor
Of wild war music o’er the earth shall cease;
Love shall tread out the baleful fire of anger,
And in its ashes plant the tree of peace!

 

 

Tiny Tome #1

cover 6x9I write daily devotionals; it is part of my faith practice. The resulting brief essays are part meditation and part writing exercise. I have quite an accumulation and decided to select 31 for my first tiny tome digital book, Joy in the Morning, Words of Hope and Encouragement. Some are in prose form, some are written as poems.

The books will only be available on this site and in e-format. I hope you are inspired by Joy in the Morning, Words of Hope and Encouragement. Below is a sample.

 

Day 25
Temptation
No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. ~ 1 Corinthians 10:13 NIV

Temptation is a beast. Not always a ravening beast, one that is evident and huge, jerking you around with relish; sometimes it is far more subtle, a gentle nudge here and there to compromise your values and your morals. C.S. Lewis in The Screwtape Letters pointed out the gradual slide into sin. “You are anxious to be able to report spectacular wickedness,” Screwtape says to Wormwood. “It does not matter how small the sins are provided that their cumulative effect is to edge the man away from the Light and out into the Nothing… Indeed, the safest road to Hell is the gradual one.”

God’s promise is the trump card. When we know the beast is at our doors, we know God is there ahead of it, ready to stand with us to overcome.

~§~

I will appreciate you downloading Joy in the Morning, Words of Hope and Encouragement, and tell me what you think of it. The next tiny tome will be a collection of short stories.

The revision of Future Imperfect, a story of the apocalyptic consequences of manipulating nature, will begin posting soon.


 

Peace like a river

A new day

God made the earth by his might, it is said,
he shaped the world by his wisdom,
crafted the skies by his knowledge.

God made all there is, was, or ever will be.
Be sure of his love and presence, guidance and mercy.
He knew, and knows us.
A confusing concept to our way of thinking,
God knowing the outcome of our lives before they’ve begun.
Am I – are you – predestined to be good or bad?
Does it matter?
We are given this day.
What will we do with it?
How will we treat others?
Those are the questions we answer
by the choices we make every day.

Lord, help me make good and right choices.

Whatever you do, whether in speech or action,
do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus;
give thanks to God the Father through him.

Will this thing I’m doing please God?
Will my life choices make God smile?
Anger, fear, frustration, greed–
none of these emotions serve God or human kind.
Are we held captive by the actions
of ego-driven manipulators?
God is in charge, our great hope, believe it;
out of madness God brings courage.
Posing and posturing will not bring resolution;
banding together for peace will turn the tide.

Pray for our world and its leaders.

And whenever you stand up to pray, if you have something against anyone, forgive so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your wrongdoings.

To be forgiven, you must first forgive.
God is a loving God. He is ready to forgive.
Am I?
Can I drop the bag of rocks that is resentment, discontent, and anger
by forgiving my enemy?
Can I untether myself from yesterday?
I can.
I must.
Forgiveness is the gift of grace.

Thank God for His amazing grace and forgiveness.

NOTE: Reflections on Jeremiah 10:12, Colossians 3:17, and Mark 11:25 from (The Daily Life Bible


 

Generosity

Easter MorningGenerous persons will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed. Proverbs 11:25 (The Daily Life Bible)

The world is a complex place and the demands are many. What can I do today, that will make life better for someone else today? A minister we had several years ago said that it wasn’t up to him to decide how a beggar would use the money he gave him; his calling was to recognize a need, and fill it. That’s the gift, not the money or food or clothes or any other material contribution; the gift is a spirit of compassion and generosity. What am I doing – what have I done – what will I do, to make life better for someone else, not just in the family, but in the community and in the world? The teacher who knew she was dying of cancer, asked that instead of flowers at her funeral, mourners donate backpacks full of supplies to be given to students. That act of compassion and generosity will make a difference for many students in ways she could never have imagined. Thank you, Tammy Waddell, for your powerful gifts of teaching and compassion.


 

The right words

A person finds joy in giving an apt reply – and how good is a timely word! Proverbs 15:23 (NIV)

sunset beach people sunrise
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Simple and direct, that’s the best way. When you say thank you, I love you, good job, keep the faith, you’re beautiful, you’re smarter than you think you are, I’m sorry, I forgive you… these are simple phrases that go a long way toward healing, restoration, joy, laughter and smiles. It doesn’t take a tome to express heartfelt words; it merely takes the right words at the right time.

 

Everything in its time

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven… Ecclesiastes 3:1

pexels-photo-576926.jpeg

I await Your timing, Lord,
but in the waiting, let me share,
gift by gift, day by day
so others know Your love and care.

In the labyrinth of my days
this moment is all I know,
Everything in its time
shapes my life’s ebb and flow.

Must I wait for You
to plant the garden now?
Must I wait for You
to show me how?

Everything will come to be
in Your time and by Your will
as I live each moment
my purpose to fulfill.

Lord, grant that every day,
I let You define the pace
for how I use my gifts
to make this world a better place.


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Mercy

“Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23 (NIV)

Mercy

When you are overwhelmed –
consumed by  temptation

loss,
fear,
faithlessness,
illness,
anger,
disillusionment,
disbelief,
depression –

the surprising, sometimes self-inflicted,
often unknowable events that cause you to ask,
“Why me? What did I do to deserve this?”

Pull the plug on that pool of negativity.
Drown the fire that would consume you
were it not for God’s incredible love,
evident in the empty cross,
the risen Christ.

His mercy is unfailing,
his presence absolute.


Please Follow, Like, Comment and Share this post. Your feedback is important. Thanks for reading One Roof Publishing. Contact Sharon by e-mail at sharon@oneroofpublish.com

Always

Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and He will say: Here am I.  Isaiah 58:9

Bouquet

No matter how down you may be,
there will be blossoms along life’s way,
waiting to make you smile.

No matter how disappointed you are,
blues skies remind you,
tomorrow holds unknown promise.

God’s love is light in the darkness,
shelter in the storm, courage against all odds,
an unbroken promise.

Look for bouquets of hope,
the Lord has put them there to remind you
He is always with you.


Please Follow, Like, Comment and Share this post. Your feedback is important. Thanks for reading One Roof Publishing. Contact Sharon by e-mail at sharon@oneroofpublish.com

In all times

pexels-photo-236164.jpegCan all your worries add a single moment to your life? Matthew 6:27 NIV

Jesus wept, but he laughed, too. He went to parties. Visited with family. Saw the humor in the mundane. Welcomed friends. Understood the value of storytelling as an art form. Engaged his audience. Jesus’ life was filled with people of all kinds. Was he a worrier? I  think not. What did he say about the birds of the air and flowers of the fields? (Matthew 2:26) Faith is a builder; worry is a destroyer. Have faith.


 

Easter Sunday

Easter Morning

He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit. Titus 3:5 (NIV)

We have a long way to go if we want to “prove” God loves us. There is no formula for belief. It is based on trust and faith. It is understanding the Cross was not the easy way; it was the only way. It got the attention of early believers, and continues to do so. Our minister pointed out in a recent sermon that we learn from the painful Holy Week journey of Christ. “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done,” he prayed (Luke 22:42 NIV). Jesus knew what he was getting into, but he did it anyway. For me. For you. This is not a message meant to bring us down, but to remind us that sometimes what we want most in life lies on the other side of pain, of discipline, of doing the hard thing. Resurrection Day is joy-filled and cause for celebration, but don’t forget what it took to get there. Love beyond reason, faith beyond fact. God never said, “Believe in me and everything in your life will be perfect.” He did say, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” (Deuteronomy 31:6 NIV).


I am a seeker, not a saint; a believer not a proselytizer. Your thoughtful comments are welcome.