Saturday, January 10, 2009

Angela's Birthday

Hey - It's Angela's birthday and she is giving the presents. So dash over to her blog, BECOMING ME and enter to win a "birthday" present from Angela for her birthday. While you're there bookmark her blog. She writes devotionals and is always nice to read.
Happy Birthday Angela.

Chatty Kelly

Call My Name

The words of this song touch my heart. "If you want to get away from the madness, just call my name and I'll be there." Like Peter on the lake, I call "Jesus" and he holds me up.

Matthew 14:29-31 -- Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, "Lord, save me!" Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him.

Chatty Kelly

Friday, January 9, 2009

Looking Beyond Looks

Here is a traditional picture of Jesus. He is always shown looking handsome, and gentle. His beard is closely cropped to his face. The second picture again depicts Jesus as gentle and attractive. He is clean cut and attractive with a closely cropped beard.

This picture is an actual model created by BBC scientists as to what they believe Jesus, or a Jewish man from biblical days would actually look like. Notice how much wider his face is, and his nose is also fuller.

Obviously, this is Osama Bin Laden. But he is a middle eastern man. His beard is long and not trimmed closely. There is nothing "attractive" about him to us. Of course, we have been shown his picture many times in conjunction with his terrorist activities.

This is a picture of a modern Jewish man I got off of Google (where I pulled all these images). I picked him because, although not unattractive, his beard is long and not closely cut.

My question to you is this. Could you love Jesus if he looked like any of the men pictured besides the top 2 images of the "commercial" Jesus. Could you love an average, plain or even ugly Jesus? We live in a society where we judge people by their appearance. But Isaiah 53:2 says "He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him."

1 Samuel 16:7 says "But the LORD said to Samuel, 'Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.'"

God judges by the heart. Jesus had a pure and perfect heart. But, what about his outward appearance? We assume he was physically attractive, but that is "perfection" to us - a perfect face, perfect hair, perfect body. But what if Jesus was ugly, would you still love him? What if he was just "plain" looking?
I mean no disrespect to God or Jesus, but I'm pondering today. Because I do look at the outward appearance. Wouldn't it be a wonderful piece of irony if Jesus was ugly intentionally, so that we'd have to look at the heart?

Chatty Kelly

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Thankful Thursday - 1/8/09

If it's Thursday, it's time to give thanks. (Yes, every day is time to give thanks. But on the blog, it's Thursdays.) This week's things I'm thankful for:

1. I am thankful for the wonderful Christmas holiday, and the joyous time I spent with my family. The kids had great playdates, and went to the movies, and it was wonderful. I also have 99% of my Christmas stuff put away (1% is the random stuff that keeps popping up).

2. I'm equally thankful the kids have gone back to school this week. I love their school with Christian educators and administrators, where they pray daily and learn about God as well as academics.

3. I'm thankful I started working on my book this week! I spent several hours on Monday doing discovery work, emailing, phoning and faxing. Leg work - but necessary.

4. I'm thankful for antibiotics; my little one has an ear infection. After being up a lot on Tuesday night with pain, I'm thankful that we have drs to find the cause, meds to fix it and for sweet sleep!

5. I'm thankful for all the encouraging words on my blog on Monday. "You like me, you really like me!" *

If you want to post your own Thankful Thursday post or to read more, visit Truth 4 the Journey by clicking the button below.

Thankful Thursday at Truth 4 the Journey

Chatty Kelly

*My husband asked this morning "What does that mean in #5?" So for those of you who have missed the "You like me" joke, here is the information (Source: Wikipedia): 'Sally Field won an Academy Award in 1985 for her starring role in Places in the Heart. Her gushing acceptance speech is well-remembered for its earnestness. She said, "I haven't had an orthodox career, and I've wanted more than anything to have your respect. The first time I didn't feel it, but this time I feel it, and I can't deny the fact that you like me, right now, you like me!"The line ending in "...I can't deny the fact that you like me, right now, you like me!" is often misquoted as simply "You like me, you really like me!" which has subsequently been the subject of many parodies.'

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


The other day I printed off a couple of my blog postings and gave them to my dad to read. My dad can be dis-interested in my life, and I expected some sort of rejection, yet was hoping for the opposite. He surprised me by saying how much he liked the one he read (he didn't read the other), and asked me to give him a few more copies so he could share them with his friends.

The next week when we got together, I had printed out several copies of my article from Word. "What's this?" he asked. "It's my article." "Where's all the other stuff?" Because I hadn't printed it from my blog, all the header, and side bar info was gone. It had my name and the date, the title and the article. It was truly just my writing. "I don't want this, I want the other stuff." He wanted me to print it off my blog like before. "I'm proud of you." he said as we went our separate ways.

I couldn't help but wonder exactly what he was proud of. It wasn't my writing. He had that in his hand, but didn't want it. Was it the blog layout he was proud of? Because if that was the case, he was proud of Edie at Rich Gift Graphics, who designed my blog. Was it the fact that I had a blog? Because we ALL know that you have to be very special and unique to have a blog. Actually, we all know that anyone can have a blog. If he's proud of that, perhaps if I sign up on Facebook, Twitter and My Space, then he'll really be proud. They are all free Internet services too.

But my heavenly Father taught me something by all of this. How many of us read a daily devotion, or a Bible study book, or Christian living book and say "Wow, I really love the Word of God." Yet, when someone hands us a Bible, we say "What's this? No, I want that other stuff with it." Do we love God's Word or Max Lucado's words?

I'm not putting down Max Lucado, because I happen to love his writing. But if we confuse God with Max, then we are really confused. It's nice to have devotions, and studies, and lifestyle books to help us understand the Bible. But the fact is, those things are peoples opinions. Because the Word of God is living, it imparts to each individual what they need. Perhaps what Max needs is different than what you or I need for today.

Just stop and think. Make sure it's God who you're following. Because we can all write words. But there is only one place to read the Word.

Hebrews 4:12 -- For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

Chatty Kelly

**Post script - I'm not implying devotions, lifestyle books, or bible studies are bad. They are GREAT! But nothing is better than the Bible.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Faith & Mustard Seeds

After my husband & I were married we wanted children right away. After two long years we were still childless, and very disappointed. Finally our daughter was born during the third year of our marriage.

While Christmas shopping the next year, I found some Christmas stockings that I just loved. They were crushed velvet with jewel-like buttons and gold trim. They came in four colors. I picked up three for my husband, my daughter and me. I looked at the fourth stocking. With all my heart I wanted to have one more child. But would I be able to? Bystanders may have seen a woman trying to decide what color stockings to buy, but actually I was trying to decide if I had faith that I would have a second child. I bought the fourth stocking.

The next Christmas I pulled out our decorations. There was the fourth stocking. It represented faith, and hope, and longing. I left it in the box and hung the other three. The next year I did the same thing. But the year my daughter turned four, I was pregnant that Christmas. I was so excited, but still the stocking stayed in the box.

The next year I pulled out all four stockings. I told my husband the story of the stocking that had been in the box all these years. See, I had never told anyone about that stocking. I had faith, but just a teeny, tiny faith, built on great hope. If anyone had discouraged me, I might have lost my faith. So instead I just kept it inside, a tiny faith the size of a mustard seed. But now my faith was realized, as I had another child.

Several years have gone by since that Christmas, and at four years old, my youngest just celebrated her fifth Christmas. I had not forgotten about the story per se, but it was in the back of my memory.

As I pulled down the stockings this past week and laid them together to pack them away, I remembered. Tears came into my eyes as I remembered that longing, that hope and that faith, and felt it realized. My children, my family just as I'd dreamed.

What are you longing for today? Have faith, even the size of a mustard seed, that God knows your heart's desire and longs to grant it to you.

To read another article on faith by me, click over to ithirst and read my article on "The Power of Faith" on the front page, toward the bottom. This is the first of my 4-part feature "The Power of Faith, Love, Hope & Prayer." I'll be writing one article a month there through April.

Matthew 17:20 -- "I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."

Psalm 37:4 -- Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Chatty Kelly