I LOVE MARRIAGE!!!….

Yesterday, I had outpatient surgery and was under the weather.  I felt helpless going through the “before procedures” and most definitely after waking up from the anesthesia.  It was then I realized how I love marriage!
My good husband was right there with me to help get through this unexpected health issue. His assistance allowed me to get the best results of the surgery, getting me back to the best quality of life.

While all this was going on, I thought of the scripture I might have shared in a previous post about friendship, but it is for Marriage too!   

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12: “9. Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: 10. If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!  11. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone?  12.Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.”
Today, I am getting all better because I have had a “cool drink of water” from a friend, my husband Phil Mason…..
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DEATH…. LET’S TALK ABOUT DYING…

Yeah! I bet you are saying, “What? No! That is not a subject I like to talk about.”  Well me either, but it is a fact that will happen and we will have to face it one day.  Your love ones will too, and it want be easy to tell them “good-bye”.  In fact, we two friends, Jenny attending her grandfather’s funeral today at 11:00 and tomorrow Sara attending her father’s at 2:00, that really brings it home to us as we pray for them.  

Death is God’s plan, we are not going to live on this earth forever.  We can thrust that it is God’s plan, it is perfect and will happen.  So just give me a minute and read my thoughts on it….

Another reason for these thoughts, a friend emailed asking what books would be good for a friend who only has three months to live, she has past that time but knows it is soon.  She has questions about Heaven, feeling not sure there is a Heaven, and needs answers.  This is reality isn’t it?   

As we live our lives here on planet earth we seem to get so busy with life we fail to remember we are not always going to be here.  We ignore the signs of aging and live without taking thought of our bodies decaying.  There’s no doubt that one day we will be leaving this place and go to Heaven to live Eternally.  We as Christians, have that assurance of a final home and that our home is waiting with our name in the Book of Life, we can count on it!  One way or the other though the dying process or His return for us, those who are believers in Jesus Christ will go to Heaven.  Lately, the way things are looking I keep looking up thinking it will be any moment…

I don’t usually put things here for you to read that’s lengthy but this is worth reading, even if you have to come back later. It is a good idea for you to “cut and paste” it for your files.  Who knows who you might need to share it with in the future as they go through the loss of a love one or facing death themselves.  Father may use you to show them the way.   

God really has used Max Lucado to give us some light on this subject.  These words below are taken from his book Fearless.  A friend gave it to me as a gift, even though we had many miles between, we read it together. We scheduled a time to discuss what we had read, it was very powerful.  It is one you need to get for your library.  

                               The Fear of Life’s Final Moments
This is the promise of Christ: “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am” ( John 14:1–3 NLT).
He promised, not just an afterlife, but a better life.
We Westerners might miss the wedding images, but you can bet your sweet chuppah that Jesus’ listeners didn’t. This was a groom-to-bride promise. Upon receiving the permission of both families, the groom returned to the home of his father and built a home for his bride. He “prepared a place.”
By promising to do the same for us, Jesus elevates funerals to the same hope level as weddings. From his perspective the trip to the cemetery and the walk down the aisle warrant identical excitement.
Weddings are great news! So, says Jesus, are burials. Both celebrate a new era, name, and home. In both the groom walks the bride away on his arm. Jesus is your coming groom. “I will come and get you . . . ” He will meet you at the altar. Your final glimpse of life will trigger your first glimpse of him.
But how can we be sure he will keep this pledge? Do we have any guarantee that his words are more than empty poetry or vain superstition?
Dare we set our hope and hearts in the hands of a small-town Jewish carpenter? The answer rests in the Jerusalem graveyard. If Jesus’ tomb is empty, then his promise is not. Leave it to the apostle Paul to reduce the logic to a single sentence: “There is an order to this resurrection: Christ was raised as the first of the harvest; then all who belong to
Christ will be raised when he comes back” (1 Cor. 15:23 NLT).
Paul was writing to Corinthian Christians, people who had been schooled in the Greek philosophy of a shadowy afterlife. Someone was convincing them that corpses couldn’t be raised, neither theirs nor Christ’s. The apostle couldn’t bear such a thought. “Let me go over the Message with you one final time” (1 Cor. 15:1 MSG). With the insistence of an attorney in closing arguments, he reviewed the facts: “[ Jesus] was raised from death on the third day . . . he presented himself alive to Peter . . . his closest followers . . . more than five hundred of his followers . . . James . . . the rest of those he commissioned . . . and . . . finally . . . to me” (1 Cor. 15:4–8 MSG).
Line up the witnesses, he offered. Call them out one by one. Let each person who saw the resurrected Christ say so. Better pack a lunch and clear your calendar, for more than five hundred testifiers are willing to speak up.
Do you see Paul’s logic? If one person claimed a post-cross encounter with Christ, disregard it. If a dozen people offered depositions, chalk it up to mob hysteria. But fifty people? A hundred? Three hundred? When one testimony expands to hundreds, disbelief becomes belief. Paul knew, not handfuls, but hundreds of eyewitnesses. Peter. James.
John. The followers, the gathering of five hundred disciples, and Paul himself. They saw Jesus. They saw him physically.
They saw him factually. They didn’t see a phantom or experience a sentiment. Grave eulogies often include such phrases, as “She’ll live on forever in my heart.” Jesus’ followers weren’t saying this. They saw Jesus “in the flesh.” When he appeared to the disciples, he assured them, “It is I myself!” (Luke 24:39 NIV).
Five hundred witnesses left a still-resounding testimony: it’s safe to die.
So let’s die with faith. Let’s allow the resurrection to sink into the fibers of our hearts and define the way we look at the grave. Let it “free those who were like slaves all their lives because of their fear of death” (Heb. 2:15 NCV).  
….Let these thoughts sink in and as God give you the opportunity share it for encouragement……….