"The LORD will always guide you and provide good things to eat when you are in the desert. He will make you healthy. You will be like a garden that has plenty of water or like a stream that never runs dry." Isaiah 58:10-12

11 November 2011

Autumn, glorious Autumn and Stalwart Soldiers!

I've taken today off of work to work at home and get some business matters resolved. I'm praying for the Lord to grant me strength, grace and perseverance to get all that I need to do accomplished.

The weather is outstanding and the colors of the leaves outside my window are unbelievably gorgeous. When I consider all the works of the Lord's hands, His creativity never ceases to amaze me. This puts me in mind of an old song from the "Jesus People" era of the '70's, "Master Designer," by Kurt Kaiser. If you're not familiar with it, you should look it up. It's a beautiful message of finding evidence of God in His creation.

Autumn is my favorite season of the year. Why? The reason is simple. It's a time of death, beauty and bounty. I know that some of my friends will think I'm a bit odd for saying this, but let me explain. Each year millions of people around the world marvel at and admire the beauty of the changing leaves and other vegetation. In fact, people make special trips to certain parts of their country solely for the purpose of admiring the colors of the autumn foliage. I would venture to say that the majority of them do not stop to think about the fact that the leaves are changing colors because they're dying.

Our society teaches us that death (and by this I mean physical death, which is the only kind in which most people believe) is a sad, ugly and even gruesome thing - something to be avoided at all costs. As a follower of Yeshua, however, I view death a bit differently. God's word teaches us that death was brought into the world through mankind's sin, but that it isn't the end. It's a doorway. For those who follow Yeshua, it's a doorway into eternal life with Him. For the believer, it's a moment of beauty, peace, joy and glory in which they shed the chains of our earthly existence in our frail, sick human bodies and move into new life with Him in heaven. Just as the trees shed their old, dead leaves in order to bring out fresh, new leaves in the spring, we shed our old bodies in order to move into a fresh, new life in eternity.

So what does this discourse on autumn leaves and death have to do with stalwart soldiers? It's simple. Here in the United States, today is Veterans Day. It's a day when we pause to remember, honor and give thanks to all of the men and women, both past and present, who have worked so hard and sacrificed so much to defend our country, to give much-needed aide in times of disaster and to champion the cause of freedom and peace both here and around the world. Many of these brave people have given their lives so that we may live in peace and freedom. To all who have served, those who continue to serve and the families who love them and let them go, I extend a profound and heartfelt "THANK YOU!"

11 November: Today I am thankful for all of our veterans, especially Gunnery Sgt. Louis A.B. Venable, Sr., and for all of our soldiers in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Marines and National Guard. May God bless, guide and protect them all.

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