Friday, November 28, 2014


And the Lord called Samuel again for the third time. So he arose and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am for you did call me.” Then Eli perceived that the Lord had called the boy.  I Samuel 3:8 (RSV)

Growing up in the hills of Pennsylvania, my playground was the woods. My home town sat in a valley, and our house was built into the hillside.

 My favorite place to play, on top of the hill, was a place called Big Rock. From up there I could see all over town. My girl friend and I made peanut butter sandwiches and walked and talked until we reached the top.  We sat on Big Rock, our feet hanging over, and ate our sandwiches. We solved the problems of ten-year-old girls.

 Whenever my mother wanted me, she called from our front porch “LOISELAINNNE” three or four times.  I heard her from the top of Big Rock. Whatever problems we were solving or whatever things we were working on were instantly dropped. I made a mad dash through the woods, down the hill, leaping over large boulders, felled trees and bushes, to get to my mother.

 I knew my mother’s voice, and I knew she had a good reason for calling me. Also, nothing was more important than obeying her call. She knew I would come running.

 Samuel did not know the Lord’s voice. But our Lord called repeatedly until Samuel discovered (through Eli) the Lord was calling him. The Lord knew Samuel was someone he could trust with His message.

 I pray I am never too busy and miss the Lord’s call and He finds me trustworthy to carry His message.  How busy are you?

 Dear Lord, Here I am. Amen

 ©2014 Lois Gosley

Friday, November 21, 2014


They came across the ocean to the wild, unsettled shore
to a new land giving refuge with its widely opened door.
And though many lost possessions, and some lost their lives,
still, they came seeking freedom with their children and their wives.

With fear and tribulations, they left their homes behind
and traveled many months for this new land to find.
And when they tread the shoreline, they knelt in prayer to God,
giving thanks to the Almighty as they stood on freedoms sod.

With guns and hoes and axes, they build their homes anew.
There never was a minute lacking for some chore to do.
With aching backs and muscles, they tilled the virgin earth,
and thanked God for their blessings, the harvest and new birth.

Each day was filled with challenge, with illness, death and pain.
But, work they did with vigor, sorrow, tears and rain.
Friends they made of natives, who taught them nature's plans.
Harvest was the sweeter with the clasp of friendly hands.

A feast they made in gladness for their freedom, joy and health.
They thanked God for the freshness, for their freedom was their wealth.
And so, their first Thanksgiving was a pattern for us all.
Still, two centuries later, we remember it each fall.

These first pilgrim Americans who were stout of limb and heart,
gave up their homes across the sea to make a brand new start.
And we, their heirs to freedom, in honor kneel to pray,
to thank them and God above for this Thanksgiving Day.

(c) 2014 Evelyn B. Ryan

Friday, November 14, 2014


Keep on loving each other as brothers. Do not forget to entertain strangers for by doing so some people have entertained angels without knowing it Hebrews 13:1-2 (NIV).

In all the years of participating in the Halloween experience, I have never seen so much candy! It was amazing to see trash bags filled and baskets overflowing with yummy treats!  All the wonderful folks from my church who donated candy and came out to play dress-up on a chilly fall evening were spreading Jesus love. They reached out to thousands of children and parents in costumes of many assorted fantasies and favorite characters. Sure, they were there for the free candy and for the parading of their costumes, but what they received was so much more—a taste of Jesus.

I was standing on the side of an orange Volkswagen van with a sticker that said,” try to look on the bright side.” On the back of the van, I saw a big peace sign. We were definitely doing this Halloween night hippy-style, but our peace and our “bright side” were because of Jesus and not the 1960’s. Nearby, a table was set up with a candle and a Bible. Daily devotionals were distributed throughout the night. Naturally, the table was filled with gobs and gobs of candy. We handed out sweets, scriptural blessings, hope and love. 

We were all in this together—the pirates, the Ninjas and even Thing 1 and Thing 2. I was reminded of how Jesus reached out to everyone in need. And everyone there was in need, including me in my medieval wench costume. 

Lord, mask me in Your love so that when strangers look at me, they see You.  

©2014 Kimberly Clayton

Saturday, November 8, 2014


The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever.  Isaiah 40:8 (NIV).

Every year I watch all the beautiful flowers throughout the seasons. They eventually wilt and fall to the ground. Some last for a couple days, while others last for weeks. Yet, eventually they all wither and die.
I did notice that each season has its own flowers. Autumn has my favorite flowers--the mums with all the earthly colors of fall. But these flowers soon wither and die also.
I thank God for artificial mums. I can put them all around my home. There is not a room in my house that does not brighten up with these bouquets. But even these flowers soon wear out and fall to pieces. They do not last forever.
What does last forever is the Word of God. I can count on the Bible to keep me from falling. His Word is good for all seasons. When I take the time to read and study the Bible, I grow stronger. His Word nourishes, sustains and upholds me through even the harshest of times.
God’s Word has been around since the beginning of time. He spoke and the world came into existence. There is power in every syllable. My existence is dependent on each word.
Like the flower I will soon wither and die. Unlike the flower, I will live forever in the presence of God. In heaven I will flourish and never wilt.            
Lord, I seek to learn Your words. Help me to hold them close to my heart and share them with others.

©2014 Dawn Sexton.