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Length of Days - Search for Freedom

Sunday, October 22, 2017


“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.”  Proverbs 22: 6 (NKJV)

What language does your children or grandchildren hearing when you speak? Are you burying words in their mind and heart — that can never be un-heard — that are not worthy of treasuring? At this time of year, we have chosen to emphasize ghouls and goblins and things that go bump in the night, rather than beauty and color and things that lift us to realms of light.

With Halloween coming up in a week, how are you preparing your children? We live in a culture that glorifies death with skulls a common decoration around us. How can we lift up the living God and the resurrected Jesus, rather than death and evil?

I would like to suggest a phrase you could say when you hand out autumn candy on October 31. We could say, “Blessings to you at Harvest time!” Let us pray:

“Holy Father, love divine, sacred is your name. May your kingdom of love and mercy fall down on everyone this fall, that we may harvest your love and grace. For today, we ask you to give us the courage to stand up for life and songs of love, rather than death and dirges. Forgive me when I have joined the world that worshiped death in previous years and direct me to use words that lift up love and praise. In the precious name of Jesus, the Christ, I pray. Amen”
Copyright 2017 Doris Gaines Rapp

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Monday, March 27, 2017

Women of Honor

“But Ruth replied (to her mother-in-law), "Don't urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God.” Ruth 1:16  NIV

March is National Women’s History Month. I would like to honor parsonage women, spouses of pastors.

As the wife of a minister, I remember my first women’s meeting at a new church we began serving. A woman asked an innocent question. “What do you believe is the role of the pastor’s wife and their children?”

My answer was simple, “My children are on display for no one.” As to the roll of the pastor’s wife, I said, “God has given me some talents and training, one is vocal music. I would like to sing in the choir. Another is my degree in Education so I’d like to teach a Sunday school class if needed.” Then, I thought of the hundreds of women who have moved to join congregations and are completely misunderstood. I smiled and added, “Sorry, even with a minor in music, I do not play the piano; and, I have no particular talent in the kitchen. With my husband gone nearly every evening, I will be home with our children. I’ll not be at the church every time the lights are on.” Sounds harsh? No, it’s honest—no surprises, no disappointments, no failed expectations.

I honor all those wives and parsonage families who have to find a new physician every few years in a completely strange community. They must search out the most economic local grocery; which vet is best for their pets; organize play-dates for their lonely children; seek which merchants to trade with in order to not offend members of the church; . . . those who wait at home night after night for their minister husband to come home from meetings. I honor all those women who rear their children to walk in the footprints of Christ, who show up for recitals, track meets, and gather around the kitchen table every night to complete homework. I honor the love and loyalty they give to their husbands whom God called into ministry. The Lord God also called their spouse into the blessed unit called “family.” I honor parsonage women who create “family” for their children and respect their husband, even when absent. Let us pray”

“Father God, creator of all there is, you have called some into a walk with you that requires uprooting young plants from their bed of security. Holy is your name and blessed are those who walk in your paths. I ask that you bless all those women who honor you by keeping their children safe so that the world may not touch them, even though they are dug-up and replanted in new soil. May that newness be a blessing and fresh nourishment, not a curse on those who love and follow you. We give up all sense of “home-town” and claim Heaven as our home. In the name of Jesus Christ whom we follow, I pray. Amen”
"God gives us stories that testify to His love. Let me tell you mine.”
Copyright 2017 Doris Gaines Rapp