What a Friend

Yesterday marked the 33rd anniversary of my beautiful and kind Mom leaving earth and entering Heaven. She left way too soon, at just 56. I miss her as much now as the day she left. She loved the Lord and it has taken me many years to understand her devotion to Jesus Christ. A devotion I now share. She used to sing a song to us, especially to her grandchildren…at least the ones who got to know her. The words echo in my memory but it wasn’t until recently that I thought about the meaning.

“What a Friend We Have in Jesus” is a Christian hymn originally written by preacher Joseph M. Scriven as a poem in 1855 to comfort his mother, who was living in Ireland while he was in Canada. These are the words, look at them closely, read them slowly and let the impact of the HOPE in these words penetrate your heart:

“What a friend we have in Jesus, All our sins and grief to bear. And what a privilege to carry Everything to God in prayer

Jesus bore not only our sin, but He will bear our grief.

Oh, what peace we often forfeit, Oh, what needless pain we bear
All because we do not carry, Everything to God in prayer

How much peace of mind have you forfeited? I know I have sometimes worried too much and gave up His peace. Oh, the needless pain we bear. Are you bearing too much? Life can give us a heavy load. Jesus offers to share the bulk of the load.

Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged, Take it to the Lord in prayer

Are you in a trial or temptation? Who isn’t, right?! Is there trouble anywhere? Oh Yes, there is trouble everywhere I look. Are you discouraged? Life just isn’t what you thought it would be? Don’t give up. Jesus is Hope.

Can we find a friend so faithful, Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness, Take it to the Lord in prayer.” 

You will never find another friend so faithful. Won’t you give Him a chance?

Jesus Christ was fully God, yet fully man. Feeling emotions, thirst, and hunger. He was tempted as we are. He came to earth and lived as a man, yet He did NOT sin. He understands human pain, grief and suffering.  

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.” Hebrews 4:15 (ESV)  

He is waiting to become your Savior. He is faithful to listen, and available to help. You need not be discouraged, He is here. He is only a prayer away.

Check out my YouTube channel Tami Bemis Cole

Hope

A very good friend of mine recently gave me a coffee mug with Hebrews 11:1 on the side. I love coffee mugs! I have several and almost every one has a story attached to it.

Hope grows from Faith

The word HOPE stands out for me. It is a favorite word of mine. A word that encourages me to hold on.

What is the definition of the word, hope?  I found this definition in an article written in 1952 called, “The Christian Hope.” “Hope is commonly used to mean a wish : its strength is the strength of the person’s desire.” 1

What do I hope for? What do you hope for? Perhaps…Calm in this chaos, healing of a marriage, healing from a disease, a reconciled relationship, for your prodigal to come home, for things to be better, to see the light at the end of the tunnel (And have it not be a freight train!)

Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”                    Hebrews 11:1

Let us look a little closer at this verse. Hope is part of the picture, but faith is a bigger piece. How can you and I be sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see? Faith in God and believing and accepting salvation through Jesus is our Hope. We cannot see faith. How can we be certain of what we cannot see with our human eyes?

We can read God’s Word and believe what He says. As we study His Word, the Holy Spirit opens our spiritual eyes to the truth. Truth that one day, things will be resolved. Not always on earth, but one day in Heaven.

Another thought I had on this verse was that you and I can have hope that God is with us through each tear and trial, each heartache and disappointment. Our faith in who He is gives us hope, gives us encouragement to go on. To be able to face another day, even though things aren’t all nice and tidy in our lives…we can go on. We can have the courage to not give up.

When I am nearing my limit to what I can bear, my faith reminds me that I have hope.

Let us look at another definition of hope.”In the Bible hope is the confident expectation of what God has promised and its strength is in His faithfulness.” 2                                              

I realized that I cannot have hope without faith. I am a person of hope, but really, I am a person of faith. The hope comes from knowing and having faith in Jesus as my Savior.

For me, and maybe you too, life continues to be messy, unpredictable and hard… however, it is also joyful, rewarding and oh so worth it! All because of our confident expectation of what God has promised and the proof is in His character of faithfulness.

He is who He says He is and He will do what He says He will do.   He gives us faith and faith gives us hope. If your hope hinges on faith in God, you hope is not in vain.

Find me on YouTube.com Tami Bemis Cole

1 & 2 Reference: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/ Christian Hope Chapter 1 October 1952

Calm in the Chaos

In these times of uncertainty, we can remain calm.

I know that we need to take this virus seriously and be cautious. I am not in any way belittling the effects this can have on the health of any of us, especially those with a compromised immune system…but we do NOT need to panic or be fearful.

We can react in two ways:

  • A) We can listen to the media hype and join the chaos & confusion OR
  • B) We can look to God, adjust our sight off of the confusion, leave the feelings of fear, panic and uncertainty and TRUST God—with God there is PEACE, CALMNESS and REFUGE.

The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 14:33 (ESV), “For God is not a God of confusion but one of peace…”

We can make a difference to those around us, a much greater difference than we realize…by our attitude, by our action or lack of action.

In Experiencing God, a Bible study by Henry Blackaby…on page 159 of the workbook, it says, ““No one can sum up all God is able to accomplish through one solitary life that is wholly yielded, adjusted and obedient to Him!”

Our faith is most clearly demonstrated by our actions.

Let me ask you a question…with all this Corona virus concerns going on…what are you DOING? How are you reacting? A or B?

We have the opportunity now more than ever to be aligned with God, to be obedient, to be alert to the needs around us, especially to the elders of our population, to be the hands & feet of Jesus…to be the voice of calm in the chaos, to be the helping hand in all the grasping & pushing.

I choose option B. Let us work together… look to God, adjust our sight, leave the feelings of fear, panic and uncertainty and trust God—Let us offer His LOVE, His KINDNESS, His COMPASSION…the HOPE of Him to those around us.

God is For Us

“What shall we say to these things? If GOD is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31

The enemy is after us, but we need not fear.

As a child of God, you & I have a BIG DAD protecting us. God is on our side, we need not fear. If we make Him our dwelling place; He will be our protection, our refuge.

“Because you have made the Lord your dwelling place—
    the Most High, who is my refuge–
no evil shall be allowed to befall you,
    no plague come near your tent.”
Psalm 91:9-10

No evil shall be allowed to harm us. GOD REIGNS!

When it feels like the enemy is pursuing us and is crushing us… “For the enemy has pursued my soul;
    he has crushed my life to the ground;…”
Psalm 143:3a (ESV)

Have HOPE.

“Deliver me from my enemies, O Lord!
    I have fled to you for refuge.
Teach me to do your will,
    for you are my God!
Let your good Spirit lead me
    on level ground!
Psalm 143:9-10

God is listening and acting in your defense. Let’s run to God for refuge and be delivered!