Saturday, November 29, 2014

The Rescue by Nancy Rue

~Saturday Stories~


This review was written a while back, so its format is different than usual

As Josiah takes what seems to be his last breath, two strong hands bring him out of the water. So begins a warm relationship between a ten-year-old Puritan, an Indian boy, and an old woman. Even after Josiah learns that the woman, widow Faith Hooker, is an outcast because of her religious beliefs, he still stays friends with her. Then his sister becomes very ill and Josiah knows the exact person who can save her: the widow. But will his father let an outcast in his home?


Genres: historical, adventure, Puritan life. For boys 14 and under. Issues dealt with: family relationships, different Christian denominations

The Rescue is based on a Puritan’s life in 1689. God is discussed a lot. Also the right to serve Him in more than one way is brought up constantly. The characters find themselves in between two different Christian denominations’ values and beliefs.  This is book 1 of the Christian Heritage Series: The Salem Years.

“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me." John 17:20-23 (NIV)

For more on Nancy Rue visit her websiteFacebook page, and blogs for tweensteens, and new adults.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Pray, pray, pray !

~Friday for Friends~


One of the greatest things you can do for your friends and enemies is PRAY for them.

1. We should pray for one another 

"And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people." Ephesians 6:18 (NIV)

"Brothers and sisters, pray for us." 1 Thessalonians 5:25 (NIV)


2. We should pray for our enemies 

"But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you," Matthew 5:44 (NIV)

“But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you." Luke 6:27-28 (NIV)


3. We should pray for rulers 

"I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness." 1 Timothy 2:1-2 (NIV)


Prayer is a powerful tool. Let's use it.

How about you? Do you pray for others? What other verses do you know on the topic?

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Not just once a year

Today is Thanksgiving. 

I'm sure most of you guys knew that. Today's the day when most everyone counts their blessings and says "yep, I have a lot." Some say their thanks to God but many just to those around them. And it's good to be thankful. But the thing is...

Why just today? 

Did yesterday have less to be thankful for? Will tomorrow bring less blessings? Maybe. But probably not.

We should be thankful ALL THE TIME. We should ALWAYS remember the blessings God gives us. 

"Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus." 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV, emphasis mine)

 "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
His love endures forever.
 Give thanks to the God of gods.
His love endures forever.
 Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever." Psalm 136:1-3 (NIV) Read the entire psalm.


Our God is wonderful, amazing, and great!!! He deserves our thankfulness! Let's try to remember His love on this special day and also as we go throughout the year. 

God bless you all!  

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Call to Give, Part 4: Oneself

~Tuesday Thoughts~


These November Tuesdays I want to explore the theme of giving. The Dictionary of Bible Themes divides it up into four things: giving of oneself, of possessions, of talents, and of time. I'm mixing that order up and we’ll have possessions first, time second, talents third and then –oh, the climax!- the giving of oneself. The first three Tuesdays were about giving possesionsgiving time, and giving talents. Now let's discuss the awesome thing called giving ourselves!


Giving of oneself sounds… awfully scary. The phrase itself makes one shudder, even if we don’t completely understand what it means.

The Dictionary of Bible Themes defines giving oneself as “the submission of the self to the will of God, in thanksgiving and service.”


Why should we give ourselves? 

Well, first because we belong to God.

"Know that the Lord is God.
  It is he who made us, and we are his[a];
  we are his people, the sheep of his pasture." Psalm 100:3 (NIV)

"Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies." 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NIV)

Second, because all good things are given by God.

"For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?" 1 Corinthians 4:7 (NIV)

“But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand." 1 Chronicles 29:14 (NIV)


Let’s not forget the greatest example of giving ever – Jesus Christ

"This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters."1 John 3:16(NIV)

"For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Mark 10:45 (NIV)


To who or to what are we supposed to give ourselves? 


1. To God

"Therefore, I urge you, rothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship." Romans 12:1 (NIV)

"And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us." 2 Corinthians 8:5 (NIV) (emphasis mine)

2. To one another

"And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us." 2 Corinthians 8:5 (NIV) (emphasis mine)

"You know that the household of Stephanas were the first converts in Achaia, and they have devoted themselves to the service of the Lord’s people." 1 Corinthians 16:15a (NIV) (emphasis mine)

3. To holy living

"Just as you used to offer yourselves as slaves to impurity and to ever-increasing wickedness, so now offer yourselves as slaves to righteousness leading to holiness." Romans 6:19b (NIV)

4. To the service of God

"Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain." 1 Corinthians 15:58 (NIV)

5. To a life of self-denial

"Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me." Matthew 16:24 (NIV)

"In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples." Luke 14:33 (NIV)

6. To martyrdom

"Then Nebuchadnezzar said, “Praise be to the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, who has sent his angel and rescued his servants! They trusted in him and defied the king’s command and were willing to give up their lives rather than serve or worship any god except their own God." Daniel 3:28 (NIV)

"However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace." Acts 20:24 (NIV)


There are also rewards - good motivation! -  for self-giving. 

"Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it." Matthew 10:39 (NIV). (You can find similar verses in Mark and Luke.)

"And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife[a] or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life." Matthew 19:29 (NIV) (You can find similar verses in Mark and Luke.)


Along with all that we are also supposed to give thanks. 

"Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name;
  make known among the nations what he has done." 1 Chronicles 16:8 (NIV)

"So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness." Colossians 2:6-7 (NIV)

If you want to find more on the topic of giving oneself you can look at what The Dictionary of Bible Themes has on it


What about you? What ideas does this give you? In what ways are you already giving yourself or can give in the future? Please share!

Monday, November 24, 2014

On my own

~Monday Movies & Music~


“On My Own” is an AWESOME song by Ashes Remain. Here are the lyrics.

I'm loving this song right now! The music, the message – it’s great.

Seriously, we can't fight this all our own. God is there all the way through and that’s the only way we can really survive. Praise God!

"The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
   my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
   my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold." Psalm 18:2 (NIV)

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Faith in dark times

~Saturday Stories~


Not that long ago GoTeenWriters had a writing prompt contest. The first sentence was “I would need a lot of luck to make it out of this alive” and it was supposed to be not more than 100 words without that first sentence. Here’s what I got:


I would need a lot of luck to make it out of this alive. Not luck - faith. It was like a soft whisper beside me as I stepped around the numerous puddles of after-rain Berlin. I draped my cloak closer. Nearby a soldier screeched at a new group of Jews to get into the truck.  Hurrying my steps I moved to the other side of the road. “Hey you!” the soldier bellowed. My heart beat faster as I heard the hard footsteps approach. “You a Jew?!” I took a breath, whirled around and glared at him. “I’m the general’s wife, you scoundrel.”


If I were to actually write the story the woman here would really be the wife of a Nazi general. She’d also be a spy, spying on her husband and sharing the plans she heard of. I don’t know if there was a woman just like that in World War II. However, I DO know there were many great people who risked and lost their lives for protesting against the oppression. And not all of them, but probably some had a faith in God that propelled them forward. They believed in something more than the regime; they knew of a country far better than what Hitler was trying to make. And then, of course, there are countless heroes of other wars and ones in times of peace.

You see, our faith is something huge. Something grand enough to die for.

"For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain." Philippians 1:21 (NIV)

How about you? What are you willing to give for your faith? What stories do you know of other great men and women who fought for what they believed in?

P. S. There are still people being persecuted for their faith even today (however awful and totally unrealistic that sounds). You can find out more at Open Doors.

Friday, November 21, 2014

What if I don’t WANT to forgive?

~Friday for Friends~


Sometimes hurts we receive lay way down deep and the last thing we want to do is forgive. We need to anyway. Yep, hard. But with God all things are possible.

We should forgive because God forgave us.

"Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you." Colossians 3:13 (NIV)

"For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins." Matthew 6:14-15 (NIV)

"And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” Mark 11:25 (NIV)

"But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" Matthew 5:44 (NIV)

Now this last one seems especially hard. Even if you don’t have an enemy per se, it’s really easy to think of someone you’re, like, rivals with - NOT in just a boyfriend/girlfriend sense either. Like who’s a better student or who do Dad and Mom like more, who’s the better singer/artist/etc. And if we have real enemies it’s even harder. But, as I said before, all things are possible with Christ! God will help us forgive. Pray about it, will you?

How about you? Do you find forgiving hard? What other verses do you know on the topic?

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The Call to Give, Part 3: Talents

~Tuesday Thoughts~


These November Tuesdays I want to explore the theme of giving. The Dictionary of Bible Themes divides it up into four things: giving of oneself, of possessions, of talents, and of time. I'm mixing that order up and we’ll have possessions first, time second, talents third and then –oh, the climax!- the giving of oneself. Two Tuesdays ago we talked about giving possesions and last Tuesday about giving time. Today we'll talk about giving our talents.


God is the one who gave us the talents we have. And, yes, even though it seems sometimes like we're talentless we do have them. 

"We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us." Romans 12:6a (NIV)

"For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?" 1 Corinthians 4:7 (NIV)


Talents are different. The talents you have are not the talents I have; the things you do well I might not - and vice versa. 

"But each of you has your own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that." 1 Corinthians 7:7b (NIV)


Talents should be used. Maybe you have heard the parable about using the talents. You can read it in Mathew 25:14-30 (it's in the New King James Version) and a similar one in Luke 19:11-27.



How, then, should our talents be used? Great question.

We should use them for God's glory.

"If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen." 1 Peter 4:11 (NIV)

"So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." 1 Corinthians 10:31 (NIV)

We should use them for the good of those around us.

"Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms." 1 Peter 4:10(NIV)

"Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good." 1 Corinthians 12:7 (NIV)


Two more things about talents:

Talents will be accounted for.

“After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them." Matthew 25:19(NIV)

And - great news! - there will be rewards too. Although salvation is given by grace and not for works, God does reward us for what we do later on.

"He repays everyone for what they have done;
  he brings on them what their conduct deserves." Job 34:11 (NIV)

“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ Matthew 25:21 (NIV)

How about you? What talents do you have? How do you already use them for God and for the good of others? How can you use them even more?

Monday, November 17, 2014

This is the air I breathe

~Monday Movies & Music~


"This is the Air I Breathe" is here sung by Hillsong. Here are the lyrics.

Sometimes we forget how very dependent we are on our God. But let us try not to. Because God really is our all. Praise Him!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

False Friends and True Strangers by Nancy Rue

~Saturday Stories~


Typical Laura: "I don't have time for a job!" I wailed to Celeste the next morning...."I've got rehearsals every afternoon. I know I've only got a chorus role, but I still have to be there....And I've got ten tons of homework now that I'm finally in MAPPS classes. What am I supposed to do - give up sleeping?"

When parking her car Laura accidentally hit a truck. No big deal, right? Wrong. Her dad tells her she not only has to pay for the damage, but that she needs to get a job too! Like she has time! But even after squeezing a job into her schedule, problems don't go away. No; instead, they add up quickly and leave her gasping for breath. What happened to "surrender to God" that made everything OK? Why is it not working anymore?


False Friends and True Strangers explores the life of a hectic-schedule teenager. Laura yearns for the times she had felt at peace with God, but they seem so long ago. Slowly yet surely the fog lifts and she feels Him, hears Him, knows where He wants her to go.

This is the second book in the 'Nama Beach High series. The first is New Girl in Town; the third and fourth - Fault Lines and Totally Unfair. Personally, I think Nancy Rue has written books that were a lot better. The beginning was slow, I believe, with most of the action in the last 15-20% of the book. Also, Laura has friends and a mentor who help her throughout the whole story -the stakes could have have been higher if she was sometimes completely ALONE. However, Nancy Rue was and remains one of my two favorite authors. She's written about a ton of books and I can hardly wait to get my hands on some of them!

For more on Nancy Rue visit her websiteFacebook page, and blogs for tweens, teens, and new adults.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Being patient even when it's hard

~Friday for Friends~


Being patient is sometimes the last thing we want to do. (S)he has driven us so nuts (s)he definitely deserves a good yell, right?

Wrong. Why? Because -

 Better a patient person than a warrior,
one with self-control than one who takes a city. Proverbs 16:32 (NIV)

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 1 Corinthians 13:4 (NIV)

But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! Galatians 5:22-23 (NLT)

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Ephesians 4:2 (NIV)

And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone. 1 Thessalonians 5:14 (NIV)

God is patient with us, so let's try to be patient with others too. Even when it's hard.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Call to Give, Part 2: Time

~Tuesday Thoughts~ 


These November Tuesdays I want to explore the theme of giving. The Dictionary of Bible Themes divides it up into four things: giving of oneself, of possessions, of talents, and of time. I'm mixing that order up and we’ll have possessions first, time second, talents third and then –oh, the climax!- the giving of oneself. Last Tuesday we talked about giving possesions. Now let's talk about time. 


One important thing to remember about time is that we really don't have a lot of it here on Earth. What's 60 or 80 or even 120 years compared to ETERNITY? And we don't even know if we'll live to 60.

"Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes." James 4:14 (NIV)


But that doesn't mean we should enjoy ourselves and do whatever "while it lasts." On the contrary, realizing the brevity of life we should strive to do something with it.

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


What we need to do is open up our eyes to the numerous opportunities of using the time given us for God's glory. 

"Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is." Ephesians 5:15-17 (NIV)


What, then, should we use time on? I'm taking the following list from what The Dictionary of Bible Themes has on the topic and adding thoughts and some Bible verses. 

    
1.   Worship and meditation 

Blessed is the one
  who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
  or sit in the company of mockers,
but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
  and who meditates on his law day and night. Psalm 1:1-2 (NIV)

God is SO worthy of our time!!! Let's give it to Him! 


2. Work 

"Six days you shall labor and do all your work," Exodus 20:9 (NIV)



3. Rest 

"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 male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns." Exodus 20:10 (NIV)

What we sometimes do is give too much time to work. We should not forget to leave a day for rest. 


4. With one's family

"These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up." Deuteronomy 6:6-7 (NIV)

Spending time with family is a good thing too, you know. 


5. In fellowship 

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:24-25 (NIV)

We are to spend time with our fellow believers, spurring each other on. 


But what does all this have to do with GIVING? 

Actually, I was kind of taken by surprise by what The Dictionary of Bible Themes had on giving time. I though it would be more about giving it to the others, using it to help those in need. 

But, brothers and sisters, 

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:41-42 (NIV)


That is NOT to say we shouldn't spend time doing good to others. 

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. Galatians 6:9-10 (NIV)

Let us. then, give time to God and to others for that is the will of Him who saved us!


How about you? What do you thinking of giving time? What inspires you to give? In what ways do you already use time to benefit others? Please share!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Here for a reason

~Monday Movies & Music~


“Here for a Reason” is a reassuring song by Ashes Remain. Here are the lyrics.

Seriously, if God didn’t have a purpose for us, do you think we would still be here? He has plans for us – for each and every one of us.  

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

Saturday, November 8, 2014

"Being alive means being able to trust" and other quotes

~Saturday Stories~


"Being alive means being willing to trust the people you care about, even though you know they will make mistakes, believing that tomorrow they may be stronger or more reliable, or more truthful than they are today.” ~Sadie, Shades of Truth

"You are one of God's excellent young women - one of His precious and priceless jewels." ~ Elizabeth George, A Young Woman After God's Own Heart



“I’m talking about self-discipline, which has nothing to do with punishment. It’s about focus and control. You have to discipline yourself to listen to God, to watch for Him, and to act on what He’s telling you whether it scares you or not.” ~ Mrs. Isaacsen, False Friends and True Strangers 

How about you? What do you think of these quotes? What quotes can you share?

Friday, November 7, 2014

He'll be with us - even in the end-times

~Friday for Friends~


You will be betrayed even by parents, brothers and sisters, relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death. Luke 21:16 (NIV)


Doesn’t seem like the most encouraging verse of the Bible, does it? Here Jesus is talking about the
end times and what will happen then. You can read the whole passage in Luke 21:5-36.
But even in this passage that speaks of destruction and anguish there is hope.


"But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict." Luke 21:14-15 (NIV)

"Stand firm, and you will win life." Luke 21:19 (NIV)

"Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man." Luke 21:36 (NIV)


You see, our God is way way way above those “friends” here spoken of. He is a Friend that will never leave us. Forever praise His Holy Name!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

The Call to Give, Part 1: Possessions

~Tuesday Thoughts~


These November Tuesdays I want to explore the theme of giving. The Dictionary of Bible Themes divides it up into four things: giving of oneself, of possessions, of talents, and of time. I'm mixing that order up and we’ll have possessions first, time second, talents third and then –oh, the climax!- the giving of oneself. So, let’s start!


Giving of possessions is what most people think of when they talk about giving. It’s what comes to mind when someone stands up at church and urges us to give. It’s what scares us out of our wits because – seriously! – we don’t have that much. Really! We work for what we get and that’s about enough for just us (and maybe a family if we’re married). We don’t have an extra stash of money anywhere just for that sole purpose of giving it all away. We give a tenth as it is. What else can anyone ask, right?

Really?

I like what a pastor at my church once said. The main meaning of it goes something like this: What we call ‘just enough’ is a stretchable thing. We have ‘just enough’ and then we slowly add some more stuff and that becomes the new ‘just enough’.

Seriously, we have a lot if we just look. For one, we probably can get three meals a day. We have a place to call home or at least to cover us when it’s cold outside. We have a phone or computer or know where to find one we can use (the library, anyone?). The list goes on and on– maybe a lot farther, maybe not that far for some of you. But we  have stuff. And not everyone has all that.  We have more than we realize.


And good news: God does not measure your giving like people do. He won’t scrutinize you for the mere ten bucks when He knows that’s basically all you have. Remember the widow’s offering (Mark 12:41-44 and Luke 21:1-4)? That should be our example of giving. Giving everything we have.

For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have. 2 Corinthians 8:12 (NIV)


For more on this awesome and really big topic of giving of possessions be sure to check out what
The Dictionary of Bible Themes has on it. The subtopics include motives for giving, the manner of giving and more. Tell me that doesn’t intrigue you at least a little bit. It does me!

How about you? What do you thinking of giving possessions? What inspires you to give? What do you already give or are planning to give? Please share!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Can't live a day without Him

~Monday Movies & Music~


"Can’t Live a Day” is a song by Code of Ethics.

Seriously, where would we be without Him? What mess of a life would we be living in right now? Praise God for always being there and for being our Savior!

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Waiting on a mountaintop

~Saturday Stories~ 


Here is what I wrote for a Monday Minute Challenge on Tessa Emily Hall's blog:


I stand at the summit, looking down at the crimson and gold valley. This was where we had met. Any minute now he’ll come bounding up behind me telling me to “keep an even pace, won’t you Angie?” And then he’ll grin that smile that let me know I meant something to him. He’ll wrap me in a big hug and I’ll just stay there. Yes. That’s how it should be. I sit on a rock and take out a leaf of paper and a pen. Looking over the world, I pour my heart out to the one who should be here with me. The final words are “I miss you. Come back.” Is there anything more to say, are there words that can portray this better? I stand up and for a minute close my eyes. “God…” I pray. “Help me”. Then I open them, let go of the letter and let the wind carry it. There’s no need for an envelope; there’s no need for a stamp. Because war has its victims. 

What about you? Have you lost a family member or friend and are still waiting? God can help you through this time!

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ. 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 (NIV)