Word Pictures


The last time Mama took a picture was using my iPhone camera to take a picture of me after I had taken a picture of her. Mom’s uncle gave her a box camera when she was 13 years old and she still had all of those pictures when she died.

When she was about 85 years old, she quit taking pictures. In fact, even before then, she often told us girls to take the pictures for her. I bought her at least two cameras that she gave back to me. Both were point-and-click 35mm film cameras that took great pictures, but she just “passed the torch” on to us.

I’ve been looking through lots of old pictures the last few months. I have most of her pictures, and every time I come home from her house, I bring more pictures. My dining table is full of shoe boxes and plastic bags full of photos.

Mom had one pet peeve. If she turned a photo over, she expected the names to be written on the back. And now I am so glad she did that, especially if the photo is someone I don’t know.

I have often wondered why our family is so attached to photos, but I’ve decided it’s because photos are memory joggers.

The authors of the Gospels—Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John—drew word pictures of the events in Jesus’ life. They were able to show us, in words, the way Jesus lived His life, from birth till death, involving the plan God laid out for our salvation. Even those Old Testament writers used word pictures to reveal God’s plans to us.

God knew that we would grow forgetful about the things in our life that were vitally important for us, so He made sure that those things were revealed to us in His word, and then He told us how to remember, since we couldn’t take a photograph of them.

“Always remember what is written in that book of law. Speak about that book and study it day and night. Then you can be sure to obey what is written there. If you do this, you will be wise and successful in everything you do.” Joshua 1:8 ERV.


The Best Thing

What do you believe is the best thing that can happen to you this year? Winning the lottery? Falling in love with Mr. Right?  Graduating? Moving into that special Dream House? Having a baby? Lose Weight? Get out of debt? “If I could just have _____, I would be happy.”
We all have hopes and dreams, longings to be fulfilled which we hope will bring happiness. We believe that if this or that happens, we can finally be happy. The word ‘happiness’ and the word ‘happening’ both come from the same root word. These words indicate that circumstances determine how we feel. We expect to find happiness based on our circumstances.
However, God steps into the midst of what is happening when we pray “Father, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Matthew 6:10. And that changes everything.
This is one of the most powerful prayers, because you are handing the whole thing over to God. When you pray this way, you are telling God, “I trust you to give me the very best thing for me, the thing that maybe I wouldn’t pick out for myself. I trust you, Father, to know more about me and this situation than I do, so I will leave it all up to you. Lord, let it be unto me according to your will, your word.”
I choose to be happy, right here, right now, this very moment. Happiness is a choice. In spite of the circumstances, I can love my spouse. In spite of troubles, I can have joy. In the midst of war, I can have peace.
This is the best thing that could ever happen to me, not just this year, but the next, and the one after that, and the one after that, until the day I die.
I choose God’s will and then I choose to be happy.