Child of God

He's got the whole world in His hands!

“You crown the year with your bounty and your carts overflow with abundance.” (Psalm 65:11)

Hello again. I trust you’re all well. It was our fifth wedding anniversary and my birthday last weekend, so we celebrated with a trip to York. This is one of our many favourite places and we had a lovely time – pity about the horrible weather – but we got away lightly compared to a lot of people, and we thank the Good Lord for His protection.

The Shambles, York

“Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” (Psalm 90:12)

Realising that life is short helps us to use the little time we have more wisely and for eternal good. I should really have this verse on a fridge magnet, where I can see it every day! I wish I could truthfully say I am an industrious person, but I’m afraid it ain’t the case. On Tuesday, my first day back from York and what did I do? Not a lot! I did the bare minimum and lounged the day away while Kev went back to work and resumed his normal routine. No excuses for my idleness but I’m trying to make up for it today.

“But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)

Hoping in the Lord is expecting that His promise of strength will help us to rise above life’s distractions and difficulties. It also means trusting in God, which helps us to be prepared when He speaks to us. Then we will be patient when He asks us to wait, and expect Him to fulfil the promises found in His word.

“Look at the nations and watch – and be utterly amazed, for I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told.” (Habakkuk 1:5)

God was telling the inhabitants of Jerusalem that they would be utterly amazed at what He was about to do – and they weren’t disappointed. Israel is the nation of God’s chosen people but He loves all nations and has promised to bless each and every individual who chooses Him over the world.

“The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.” (Zephaniah 3:17)

We visited the Minster – first time for me, but Kev has been before. It was beautiful and, as you can see, Kev took some good pictures while we were there. We also visited the National Railway Museum, much to Kev’s delight. He’s a huge fan of this place and I must admit to finding it quite atmospheric and interesting. We sampled the local restaurants, namely an Indian and a Chinese, and shopped ‘til we dropped! You won’t be surprised to read that we also visited a couple of pubs too – well, it has to be done!

“I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenwards in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:14)

We’ve all done things of which we are ashamed but, because of our hope in Christ, we can let go of past guilt and look forward to what God will help us become. Don’t dwell on your past (I can be quite guilty of this!) but concentrate on your relationship with God now. Remember you are forgiven and then move on to a life of faith and obedience.

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” (1 Peter 1:3)

Wonderful words indeed! As I said earlier, we really felt that the Lord had blessed our trip to York. Both the journeys were easy, swift and trouble-free. The accommodation was perfect and we really enjoyed the long weekend. Although the weather was a bit hairy at times, including a snowstorm on Saturday, we were kept safe and well throughout the time we were away.

But, much more importantly, God has granted us the promise of a new life with Him, made possible by the sacrificial death of His only Son, Jesus Christ.

Hope you enjoy your weekend, despite the weather. Stay well, stay safe and remember:

No Christ, no hope – know Christ, know hope!

Love Ann ❤

Kev at the National Railway Museum

“I have set the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.” (Psalm 16:8)

Hello again. I hope you are all well and happy. Having moved safely through the hump of Covid, I feel blessed to have come out the other side, relatively unscathed.

There is a unique sense of security felt by believers. God doesn’t exempt us from the day-to-day circumstances of life. Believers and unbelievers alike experience pain, trouble and failure at times.

Unbelievers may have a sense of hopelessness about life and confusion over their true purpose on earth. Those who seek God, however, can move ahead confidently with what they know is right and important in His eyes. They know that God will keep them from being moved off His chosen path.

St Mary's and All Saints' Church, Great Budworth

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39)

These are some of the most comforting verses in all scripture. Believers have always had to face hardships in many forms: persecution, illness, imprisonment, even death. This could cause them to fear that they have been abandoned by Christ, but it is impossible to be separated from Christ. His death for us is proof of His unconquerable love.

Nothing can stop Christ’s constant presence with us. God tells us how great His love is, so that we will feel totally secure in Him. If we believe these assurances, we shouldn’t have anything to be afraid of.

That's all good in theory but, being a bit of a 'stress-head' and a worrier by nature, I frequently have to remind myself of who is in charge of this crazy world! Not Biden, not Boris, but God, our loving heavenly Father.

Arley grounds

I make a lot of soup, especially over the colder months. I’ve neglected this activity lately and we found ourselves with no homemade soup in the freezer. I decided I had better make some emergency supplies, so that Kev can have some to take to work with him. Rummaging in the bottom of the fridge, I found: four celery sticks, two carrots and a wilted bunch of spring onions! I added a potato, a tin of tomatoes, vegetable stock, celery salt and pepper – oh, and some miso paste and a Parmesan rind. I christened this humble offering “Desperation soup”. To my amazement, it tasted really good and Kev requested a repeat of it. He renamed it Desperado soup. The trouble with that is I probably won't remember in a couple of weeks...

My sister rang me while I was preparing this and, when I told her that I had no idea what to write this week, she suggested that I base my blog on my Desperation soup! So, thanks to Susan for this….

“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6)

Believing that God exists is only the beginning; even the demons believe that much! God will not settle for mere acknowledgement of His existence. He wants a personal relationship with you that will change your life. Those who seek God will find that they are rewarded with His intimate presence.

If I have been particularly horrible and said and thought bad things about people (we all do it!), I sometimes feel that God is no longer close to me. It's taken me a while to realise that God never moves away from me - it's me who moves away from Him with my sinful behaviour. Once I realise this and ask for forgiveness, harmonious relationships are restored.

Arley Hall

Back to the soup – I called it Desperation soup because of the paucity of the ingredients but, in reality, I am far from desperate. I just chose to use up the ingredients, rather than throwing them away, because I hate waste. We certainly have sufficient funds in the pot to buy the ingredients for as many soups as I care to make, and I am so very thankful for this. But I made the soup based on what was in my cupboard and, to a certain extent, you make your life according to the ingredients to hand.

When I was a teenager, I certainly wouldn’t have thought my life would be as it is now. I suppose I just assumed that the husband, possibly two or three children and a nice house would all fall into place. Folks who know me or have read this blog for any time know that my life didn’t turn out in the way I had expected. I have led what you might call a chequered life and it certainly wasn’t a dull journey. I chose a lot of wrong roads but eventually I took the only road worth going down – the road to Christ. It took me far too long and I wasted so many years and I can never get those years back.

But I’m in the right place now, at last. I have my wonderful husband, who is my soul mate, my best friend and the love of my life but, most of all, he’s my brother in Christ. I firmly believe that the Lord saved the best for last.🙂

Great Budworth

Basically, I am extremely thankful for what the Lord has provided for me. We live in comfortable and affordable rented accommodation but the main bugbear with this is the frequent problems with communal areas and the housing maintenance group’s seeming reluctance to carry out repairs. I have to admit that this sometimes gets me down big-style. Trying to report repairs is a challenge in itself and this makes me increasingly frustrated and anxious. I am prone to depression, anyway, so on a bad day this can seem like an insurmountable problem.

There is a song from my childhood that I like, called “A little talk with Jesus makes it right” and when I am on my own I frequently have a chat with the Lord. He’s a good listener and I always, always feel better afterwards. Voicing my concerns and feelings out loud puts things in perspective for me and I realise, yet again, how very fortunate I am to have so many good things in my life. But I am only a flawed human at the end of the day, so I do have to remind myself over and over and over, sometimes …🙃

Well, if you have read so far, thank you for persevering with my rantings! We went to Great Budworth the other week and most of my pictures were taken there. It’s a peaceful village about two miles from Northwich and has a lovely pub, which we visited, of course – well, it would have been rude not to! We also had a lovely country walk.

No matter how down you feel, how depressed and anxious, always remember that Jesus is ready to listen to your concerns. You are never alone. Always remember just how much you are loved and cherished by our wonderful God.

I make no apologies for repeating the fact that I could not even contemplate existing in these days without my wonderful Friend and Saviour.

No Christ, no hope – know Christ, know hope.

Love Ann ❤