God's Roadmap

Now may the Lord Jesus Christ and our Father God, who loved us and in his wonderful grace gave us eternal comfort and a beautiful hope that cannot fail, encourage your hearts and inspire you with strength to always do and speak what is good and beautiful in his eyes (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 TPT).

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

God Made Life Simple

by Barbara Latta

We can't make anything better than the way God already made it. Life is simple if we will let it be His way. 

I lose my glasses, cell phone, or keys quite often. After fretting and looking for hours, I finally give up and ask God to help me and always my lost item will show up. When I let go, the solution becomes simple.

Share some ways God has shown you His glory in simple ways.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

What is hallowed about Halloween?

by Barbara Latta

Families can offer alternatives to Halloween
Millions of children will be prancing about in costumes on October 31 for some fun, laughter, and treats. To them this is a day for dressing up and enjoying a sugar high unlike any other day of the year. The origins of Halloween are rarely thought of as families venture out for trick-or-treat, but in reality this day is a celebration of death and evil.

Those words are not welcomed by most because pondering the holiday puts a halt to the fun. I have often wondered why people want to decorate their home with bats, witches, devils, vampires, and werewolves. What is fun about being terrified and giving glory to evil?

Over 2,000 years ago the Celtics celebrated a day called Samhain (pronounced sow-in) at the end of the summer when the fall harvest began. They thought ghosts roamed the earth to cause mischief and bring harm to the crops. The Druids (Celtic priests) would build fires and wear masks to ward off evil. People would also wear masks in an attempt to fool an evil spirit into thinking they were one of the ghosts and the mask wearers would remain unharmed. The Celts would leave food outside their doors to prevent evil spirits from entering. Thus treats to prevent being tricked.

In the 7th century, the Pope recognized all Christian martyrs by setting aside a day known as All Saints Day. This was celebrated on November 1. Therefore, October 31 became the hallowed eve of All Saints Day and evolved into Halloween.

All Saints Day honors Christian martyrs
Over the centuries customs from various countries have become intertwined with different traditions.  Even though all costumes are not scary, Halloween is still associated with death and evil. For this reason a lot of churches organize fall festivals to correspond with October 31 to provide an alternative for children to dress up, get candy and have parties.

When our children were small we made this choice because we didn’t want to celebrate a holiday associated with death and evil. It seems the public got “tricked” into believing emulating evil is harmless.

We can still have fun and let children dress up and gobble up bags of candy without giving glory to evil forces. We can leave the ghosts and witches behind and celebrate God’s goodness that He is Lord over all evil. One day every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord.

That’s something to shout about!

Share your thoughts about how Halloween is portrayed in your community.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

God's Glory is Evident in Creation

by Barbara Latta

"The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands" (Psalm 19:1).

How can we miss the magnificence of God's artwork? The shimmer of the moon glowing over crystal water, a towering oak blowing in the wind stretching its arms toward the heavens, or a simple snowflake different in every aspect from any other all give evidence of a creator.

To enjoy the colors, shapes, textures, sounds, and smells He gives us in creation are all gifts He has bestowed upon us. He could have made everything the same and we would never have known the difference. But in His love and majesty He gave us wonders to enjoy. 

Bask in creation and thank Him for his gift. 
John's Pass St. Petersburg, Fl
What are some of your memories of enjoying creation?

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

How do we pursue peace?

by Barbara Latta

War is everywhere. People are in strife and fighting among themselves. How do we find peace in the middle of the chaos that exists today?

We can’t look to government or other people to give us peace. Our hearts can only be at rest when our minds are stayed on God (Isaiah 26:3).

In the middle of every news report, natural disaster and human chaos if we will stop and think about our heritage from the Lord, peace can follow our thoughts. Anxiety over world events will only fuel our fear and worry. 

One of my favorite scriptures is Philippians 4:6-7 which says, “Be anxious for nothing, 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 minds through Christ Jesus."

What are your favorite scriptures for remaining at peace?
God is our peace

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Death Where is Your Victory?

by Barbara Latta

Peggy Scrivner Robinson
This week our family was hit with the news we all encounter at one time or another. We lost someone dear to us. My husband’s aunt joined those who have gone before her and was welcomed into the arms of Jesus.

Death is a transition from a life held bound by the physical to a glorified, spiritual body that can do anything. We rejoice knowing our loved one is no longer held by the chains of this earthly life. But we still have to cope with the void left behind by their absence. It’s a ripping away of the soul because we have ties with those we love. It hurts. We know they are happy, but we grieve for ourselves because it’s painful to be without them. They are gone, but death leaves a shadow.

Jesus welcomes us to heaven
But in the pain we can have peace. While we allow ourselves to grieve, we should not wallow in mourning. We allow ourselves the memories, but not the despair of regret.
Remembering the joy that is before the loved one who has departed from this earth will bring us comfort if we will dwell on that fact instead of our loss. The separation is only temporary.

God knows our pain and He says it’s OK to cry. Just don’t forget that he will one day wipe away our tears.

“Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints.” (Psalm 116:15 NKJV).

How has death affected your family? Share your thoughts.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Remember Columbus Day

by Barbara Latta

Our calendar is filled with holidays and sometimes we tend to overlook some of the not so prominent ones which require us to shop for gifts or plan special meals. Columbus Day recognizes the bravery of a man who set out on a voyage into the unknown because he believed in a theory strong enough to risk his life to prove it.  The New World would have eventually been discovered by someone else, but who knows how long it would have been before another would have set out into the vast ocean to explore the world.

He is known to have said, "You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore."  

We too can never cross into bigger and better things without letting go of the familiar so we can enter into new horizons.

Have you experienced a new horizon in your life? Share your thoughts.
Columbus braved the unknown

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Am I Living A Seasoned Life for Christ?

by Barbara Latta

Imagine sitting in front of a juicy steak still sizzling from the grill surrounded by a steaming baked potato topped with butter melting down the sides.