Initially, ‘Glasses of Grace’ started because my niece, Grace, had to get glasses for reading. Since grace is such a spiritual topic and the fact that my niece is such a doll, I started thinking about the ways God shows us His grace on a daily basis. From His servings, His glasses, of grace to us - to seeing the world through the eyes of grace (or Grace, since she had new glasses and better sight), it made sense in more ways than one, so a title was born. Blessings and all, this is my life…

Sunday, November 30, 2008

This n' that

So I decided it was time to change to a Christmas theme. I don't decorate much for Christmas, but I saw this nativity scene a few years ago in Gatlinburg when I was there with my friend Gina and her family. I thought it was adorable, but couldn't afford it, so imagine my surprise when I got it, in parts, from Gina and another girl I work with that year at Christmas! It's been in boxes in my garage probably since I moved here and I just haven't thought about putting it out because I didn't know where I could put it that cats might not get to it (!!), but I decided this year that my mantle is a great place. It is cute as pie sitting up there and I like seeing it every day.

Pastor Mel's sermon today was on the 9th commandment, about not giving false testimony against your neighbor. I bought a CD of last Sunday's sermon since I was out of town, so I'll listen to that soon and get that one and today's sermon notes posted soon. I cannot tell you how blessed we are to have him as our pastor. The wisdom he shares every week just makes me want to sit there with my mouth hanging open, but I know that's not a good look for me, so I try not to do that! :-) These sermons have been a very interesting walk through the 10 commandments. His applications to life today are great. Next Sunday is supposed to be the 10th one, but we are having one of our Living Christmas Tree programs at 10:45 instead of the service. We are having regular church at 8:00, so I am hoping he will delay the 10th commandment until the week after the tree. I am going to try to find out this week what the deal is going to be and if I have to, I may just have to get up and go to the 8:00 service next week! I can't imagine that he won't wait a week to do it, but we'll see.

I'm sad to say that it's back to work tomorrow. I am always amazed at how quickly time off passes! I think that saying is, "I owe, I owe, so off to work I go!" :-)

Hope you had a great Thanksgiving, and thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

If anyone is out there still reading this blog besides my sweet two or three regulars who leave me notes, I just wanted to wish you ALL a great Thanksgiving. I've gotten away from posting as much as I did at one point for reasons that are more personal than anything else, but that's not to say it will always be this way. Despite that, I do still check in on several of you and love keeping up with your thoughts and lives. The internet is a great thing for staying connected.

Life has just been filled with regular stuff....work, church, my nieces, watching the economy (just like everyone else) and getting ready for the holidays. We have our Living Christmas Tree at church next weekend and have been racing to get ready for that. We've had so many other things that we've participated in this year that we may be a bit behind on learning the music as well as we should, but, THANK HEAVEN, we get a practice CD. That has really helped! I definitely need to still do some work on certain parts though! :-)

I have gotten two or three, maybe even four, letters from the little girl I am sponsoring. I continue to know this was the right thing for me to do and that Compassion International was the right organization for me to do this through. She often stresses how much she wants to be a nurse when she grows up. I just encourage her in that goal and love the way she shares the things she's learning at church. I still just cannot imagine what a day in her life is like. We have so much to be thankful for here, there is no doubt.

My sister, nieces and I went to my mom's for a few days for a long weekend this past weekend and had a great time. Patty and Kate slept on my mom's pullout couch, so they could watch some late TV I am sure, but that's fine with me because Grace and I got the bed! :-) Grace informed me that I snore, evidently a LOT to hear her tell it (!!), but we had a great time together. I know I have said this before, but she is SO much like I was at that age and my mom even wholeheartedly agrees. Grace just makes me laugh....a LOT. On the way down, we watched part of a movie, played travel Scrabble, sang, and goofed around all the way down. She is VERY quick witted for her age. We can simply look at each other, know what the other is thinking, and we both just start laughing. She bought a remote control whoopie cushion sometime recently (before this trip) and she had to keep using it on unsuspecting victims at every opportunity. There is never a dull moment with that girl. I can remember some of my aunts at my grandmother's laughing at me when I would say stuff when I was a kid, and I was thinking today if Grace truly is like I was at that age, I can certainly see why my aunts were laughing. Kate was just her sweet, precious self. She's 14 now and definitely coming into her own. She is a a great big sister to Grace. One good thing about me going on that trip is that it gives Patty and Kate some one-on-one mother/daughter time that they don't always get at home. I had some good talks and laughs with Kate too, so it was nice to get away. I loved the time with them both.

That's pretty much my life in a nutshell. I am trying to get rid of a sinus infection that keeps hanging on, but I'm definitely on the mend. I'm going to my dad's tomorrow afternoon for Thanksgiving and am looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow morning. Of course, 'in' is a relative term. My internal alarm usually wakes me up about 7, but hopefully I'll be able to go back to sleep! I love knowing I have 4 days off! YEA!

Anyway, back to my original point. I hope YOU have a fabulous Thanksgiving, and thanks for stopping by...I appreciate it!

PS.....With all this being said, I haven't gotten notes from this past Sunday's sermon, but I will get those and get them posted soon. I can't wait to hear what Pastor Mel had to say!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The 7th Commandment

Following are the notes from this past Sunday morning's sermon regarding the seventh commandment, from the sermon series, "Living Life to the Power of Ten."

#7 - FIRE ALWAYS BURNS
Exodus 20:14

Exodus 20:14 - "You shall not commit adultery."

***The 10 commandments are like a fence God has constructed for our freedom. They protect us from things in the world that will (and can) destroy us.

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 - "Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God."

Matthew 5:27-28 - "You have heard that it was said, 'Do not commit adultery.' But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart."

***This commandment is dealing with the condition of your heart.

***Our actions start as a seed in the heart - and the seed is the same essence as the fully developed plant.

***The heart controls the life.

***God is concerned about your heart. It is either given to Him or to self.

***You are free to choose evil, but you are not free to choose the consequences.

Malachi 2:14-15 - "You ask, "Why?" It is because the LORD is acting as the witness between you and the wife of your youth, because you have broken faith with her, though she is your partner, the wife of your marriage covenant. Has not the LORD made them one? In flesh and spirit they are his. And why one? Because he was seeking godly offspring. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith with the wife of your youth."

Galatians 5:7-8 - "You were running a good race. Who cut in on you and kept you from obeying the truth? That kind of persuasion does not come from the one who calls you."

***Fire always burns. Adultery always causes pain and brokenness.

1 Corinthians 10:12 - "So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don't fall!"

***Unguarded strength is a deceptive place to be.

1 Corinthians6:9-11 - "Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God."

***There is forgiveness IF you choose to repent, but there are consequences that may never be removed.

***It is foolish to think that pre-meditated sin is not going to cause destruction.

***No matter how great our sin, God's grace is greater.

***God brings conviction so we can correct the relationship.

***God's power over sin is our only hope to find victory in life.

***God established a fence for your protection.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The 6th Commandment

Following are the notes from this past Sunday morning's excellent sermon regarding the sixth commandment, from the sermon series, "Living Life to the Power of Ten."

#6 - RESPECTING LIFE AND EXTENDING GRACE
Exodus 20:13

Exodus 20:13 - "You shall not murder."

***The commandments move forward through 3 areas: God (commandments 1-4), family (commandment 5) and relationships (commandments 6-10).

***The seed is the same essence as the plant, just in a different form. (The difference between hate and murder).

***God is saying that another person's life has value. Do not take it into your own hands.

***Every person has a soul and no matter what they have done, we need to treat them as God would have us to treat them.

***Your words, and your silence, can destroy a person.

***Does your life encourage others or cause them pain?

***Romans 13: 9-10 - "The commandments, "Do not commit adultery," "Do not murder," "Do not steal," "Do not covet," and whatever other commandment there may be, are summed up in this one rule: "Love your neighbor as yourself." Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law."

***Light and darkness (love and hatred) cannot co-exist in the same place.

***It is always your turn to right a wrong with another. It is always your turn to obey God and make things right.

***You can easily tell those who are walking in a love relationship with God. They love others.

***No matter what happens TO you, you control what happens IN you.

***When someone puts you to the test (treats you wrong), will you pass the test of your heart?

***Matthew 5: 44-45 - "But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous."

***The 6th commandment is about respecting life.

***Your actions and words reflect the condition of your heart.

***Does your heart prove that you've been born again?

***There is nothing like a clear conscience. It is priceless and worth more than money can buy.

Monday, November 03, 2008

The 5th Commandment

Following are the notes from this past Sunday morning's sermon regarding the fifth commandment, from the sermon series, "Living Life to the Power of Ten."

#5 - HONOR AND BLESSING
Exodus 20:12

Exodus 20:12- "Honour your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you."

***The danger of losing the fear of God is that we become wise in our own eyes.

***Wisdom is a by-product of our trust in Almighty God.

***Parents are the keepers of God's covenant...children will follow behind and someday enter into the same covenant. Do your children see the commandments of God in you? Is God 1st place?

***Is your life a demonstration of the goodness of God?

***If your children were going to honor God by looking at your life, would they know what to do?

***The 5th commandment is the only one with a promise attached to it. "I will bless your life and take care of you."

***God put you in your family and your father and mother are to be honored for who they are.

***How do you honor an ungodly parent?
--forgive them
--be kind to them
--pray for them

***To honor does not mean that you approve of that which is evil.

***God's ways are not man's ways. They do not always make sense.

Matthew 5:38-48 - "You have heard that it was said, 'Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.' But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you. You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbour and hate your enemy.' But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect."

***Giving honor to your parents will bring God's blessing upon your life.

***The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

The 4th Commandment

Following are the notes from this past Sunday morning's sermon regarding the fourth commandment, from the sermon series, "Living Life to the Power of Ten."

#4 - TAKE TIME
Exodus 20:8-11

Exodus 20:8-11 - "Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.

***Rest is important....but HOW you rest determines how you are renewed and strengthened.

***A restless heart usually leads to a reckless life.

***The force and power of this commandment lies not in the resting, but in the sanctifying.

***The Sabbath is unique and special.

***Keeping the Sabbath holy uniquely identifies Christians as holy unto God.

***You need a day of rest. In God's eyes, a day of rest is just as important as a day of work.

***You need a day of corporate worship. It is holy unto HIM, not holy unto US.

***You need a day to give time to a personal love relationship with God.