Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
Oh yes, Thanksgiving is creeping up on us! I have read a lot of great posts about giving thanks, but people at the Nursing Homes which I visit take on a different viewpoint of the holiday. Very few will get to spend it with their family at a table filled with food. Most will get a few slices of turkey and gravy in the dining hall where we are meeting. Their thankfulness isn’t punctuated by football games, and they aren’t making plans to do Black Friday shopping. Instead, most of the thankfulness up and down the halls here is for a table that they will sit at one day with Jesus Christ. They come to these hymn singing times and either join in if they still can or just listen as the Lord lifts up their hearts to Him. Yes, we should be thankful for what we have received, but what lies ahead is so much greater and will last forever. Why not take a moment to close yourself in with God and picture His answer to your prayers before you receive them? Why not give thanks right now for what lies ahead, and then receive His peace which is greater than anything you can understand that can guard your heart and mind in Jesus?
Because God’s children are human beings—made of flesh and blood—the Son also became flesh and blood. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the devil, who had the power of death. Only in this way could he set free all who have lived their lives as slaves to the fear of dying. Hebrews 2:14-16 NLT
It is just a few days since the election. My wife and I worked 14 hours at the polling place and had the privilege of seeing Democracy in action. People who voted as we did and those who chose the other candidates came in. Folks who were way richer than us and those who had little filled out their ballots. At the end of the day, we went home, had a snack and watched a little of the coverage, hoping for our personal choices to win. This year many of the races are taking a while to be decided, but the best part of it all is that Jesus was not up for reelection. His term will never expire, and He is still on the throne! Since it was Veterans Day today, we took the time to thank the many veterans, now in their twilight years who live at Life Care Center. They gave their best to help protect our freedoms, but there is a Veteran who gave far more. He is the general of the armies of Heaven and His name is Jesus. He gave His life to give us the greatest freedom of all – Freedom from the fear of death! Now, He invites everyone who will put their trust in Him to come and join Him at the victory banquet. Come and Dine – the Master calleth – Come and Dine! I hope you like our little song session today from Life Care Center. If you are a veteran, we give you our thanks and appreciation. Have a blessed weekend all!
If you have ever sung this song, have you wondered just exactly how God’s love lifted us? Today I shared a story of when our three-year-old son was hurrying to go to church because he knew his grampa and gramma were going to be there. So instead of holding his mom’s hand and walking on the sidewalk, he cut across our lawn, but as he ran, his little toes tripped over tree root. Though he was unhurt, he muddied the beautiful white turtleneck shirt he was wearing from top to bottom. Now Nancy did not spank him, laugh at him or even yell. Instead, she quickly brought him inside, cleaned him up and put a clean shirt on him. Then she gently led him by the hand down to our car and off we went! In the same way, Jesus picks us up when we have fallen in the mud. Washes us with His own blood and dresses us in the white robes of his righteousness. Then He lifts us up and leads us all the way to Heaven. All we have to do to keep holding onto His hand!
And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Mark 10:47 ESV
Fanny Crosby is one of America’s most popular hymn writers, and though she is best known for Blessed Assurance, Pass Me Not, is special, because just like the man, who cried out to Jesus, Fanny Crosby was blind. In her life, Fanny composed thousands of hymns, advocated in Washington D.C. for education for the blind, worked in New York’s inner-city missions and gave away most of the little money which she received for her writing. Pass Me Not O Gentle Savior was written in 1868 after a visit to a prison. As she was passing through the corridors, she heard one of the inmates crying out, “Don’t pass me by!” and they became the central image of this hymn.
But whether you are sitting as a blind beggar on the side of the street or sitting in the finest hotel in New York, Jesus is passing by. Compared to the Son of God, we are all blind beggars and in desperate need of His healing touch. He is ready to come to us at any moment, yet He waits for us to see our need, listen for His footsteps and call out to Him. When we cry out, He will stop; He will turn; and He will call us to come. Will you run to him today?
Today’s hymn was recorded last week on my return to Sunshine Memory Care after a three-week pause due to my own battle with Covid. What a wonderful time we had in that short visit. Imagine what it will be like when we gather around Jesus in Heaven. We will all certainly look different, and we will sing with all our hearts because there our eyes will be opened, and we will see Jesus as He truly is!