words for Lent – Good news

And before anyone can go and tell them, they must be sent. As the Scriptures say, “How wonderful it is to see someone coming to tell good news!”Messiah selections from the New Testament

 

John 1:29

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God. He takes away the sins of the world!

Romans 10:15

 And before anyone can go and tell them, they must be sent. As the Scriptures say, “How wonderful it is to see someone coming to tell good news!”

2 angels in white
angels from the LIGHTSTOCK.COM collection, affiliate link

“Let all God’s angels worship him.”

Hebrews 1:6
 

Holy Bible: Easy-to-Read Version (ERV) English

© 1978, 1987, 2012 Bible League International

 
Good news Watercress Words.com
 
 
    

Messiah by Handel

 We usually associate  Messiah with Christmas, but Handel , son of a barber-surgeon, wrote it for Easter.
He drew the lyrics from Scripture, choosing passages that tell the story of God sending Jesus to earth to redeem His people.
 
Get in on iTunes (this is an affiliate link)
 
 

sharing faith, hope, and love

I would love for you to start following Watercress Words : use this form to get an email notification of new posts . Please find and follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and LinkedIn. Thanks so much.

                              Dr. Aletha 

"And now these three remain:faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love."
1 Corinthians 13:13, photo from the Lightstock.com collection (affiliate link)

hope and a future after COVID-19

When you feel like giving up, endure.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

JEREMIAH 29:11 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

hope and a future

Christians often read, quote, and share this scripture when they want to encourage someone starting a new venture, like graduating, starting a business, or to deepen someone’s faith.

It’s not wrong to do that, but by taking the verse out of context, we miss much of the richness and the true inspiration of the passage.

Earlier in the book of Jeremiah we learn that the people he was writing to were enslaved people, who were refugees from their native country; not just refugees, but exiles. Life was tough; it had been for a long time, and would be for a long time more. This is what had been done to them.

” I will completely destroy them and make them an object of horror and scorn, and an everlasting ruin. 

 I will banish from them the sounds of joy and gladness, the voices of bride and bridegroom, the sound of millstones and the light of the lamp. 

 This whole country will become a desolate wasteland, and these nations will serve the king of Babylon seventy years.”

Jeremiah 25

Now I am certainly not suggesting God sent COVID to us now as punishment or as a divine object lesson. We all know life is not perfect, bad things happen to everyone. But the way we look at our difficulties and what we do with them makes the difference.  

Jeremiah 29:11graphic by alittleperspective.com
graphic created by Christine Miller, http://www.alittleperspective.com/category/perspective/, used by permission

What a Bible scholar says

I’m not a Bible scholar but my friend Jeremy is. He wrote this commentary on Jeremiah 19:11 which he generously shared with me and you.

“This is one of the most misused verses in the Bible, but the comfort this verse offers is far deeper than the out of context promise often given to graduates.

This was a specific promise given to specific people as opposed to a universal promise to mankind, and it was made to them while God was destroying their nation, tearing down the Temple, and sending the people into 70 years of captivity in a foreign land.

Families were torn apart, people were enslaved; those left behind in a desolate homeland struggled to survive starvation. This was the setting of the promise.

But the promise God gave them was- no matter how bad things were about to get, God had a plan and He would not abandon them forever. 

The same God who promised Israel their suffering would end, and they would come into a brighter future because of the refining they would experience,  is the same God who brings us into the covenant promises. No matter what fire we are in, if it is the Lord’s chastisement we are enduring, God  will bring us into a better future if we allow the fire to purify us.

When you feel like giving up, endure. These people suffered for 70 years to receive this promise, so we can endure whatever length we must as well. ”

You can read the entire chapter here –Jeremiah 29

 

written by Jeremy Scott Wilson, B.A., Biblical and Theological Studies; M.A., Theological Studies and Church History. Jeremy occasionally blogs at Awakening to basics .

exploring the HEART of faith, hope, and love

I would love for you to start following Watercress Words : use this form to get an email notification of new posts . Please find and follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and LinkedIn. Thanks so much.

                              Dr. Aletha 

faith, hope and love in cursive letters
another inspirational graphic from the Lightstock.com collections of stock images, an affiliate link

a desolate waste

Dr. Jonathan Weinkle, author of Healing People, Not Patients , referenced Jeremiah in a recent blog post about the COVID-19 pandemic.

All we can do is keep breathing.  Breathing in the desolate waste, hoping it will again be tilled one day.

The conditions for that tilling, however, are faith, repentance, and repair.  We don’t get to just decide to go back and till the desolate waste and expect crops to sprout abundantly.  We have to work for it. 

Another prophet, Jeremiah, predicted, as the Jews were still in the process of being exiled from the land by the Babylonians, “Houses, vineyards and fields will again be purchased in this land.”  But he meant seventy years thence, not the next day.  Things had to happen, conditions had to change, before that could happen.

Dr. Weinkle

Read his post at

Keep Breathing

Viral Words from Bonhoeffer

As the world grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic, I remembered Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a German clergyman and son of a physician.

dietrich Bonhoeffer

As the world grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic, I remembered Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a German clergyman and son of a physician. He lived in Germany during the Nazi era, and tried to save lives by following his conscience.

one act of obedience is better than 100 sermons- Dietrich Bonhoeffer
graphic courtesy of Lightstock.com

For that, he was executed and is considered to be a martyr for his faith.

Review the life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer at this

previous post .

a quote from Dietrich Bonhoeffer
graphic courtesy of Lightstock.com

sharing faith, hope, and love

I would love for you to start following Watercress Words : use this form to get an email notification of new posts . Please find and follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and LinkedIn. Thanks so much.

                              Dr. Aletha 

FAITH LOVE HOPE- words created with letter tiles
These three remain, faith, hope and love, and greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13:13

use Lightstock.com, stock photos and other media, affiliate link to help fund this blog

cheesy-free faith-focused stock photos

Photos and graphics in this post are from Lightstock-quality photos and graphics site- start free trial and get 4 free credits here. 

(This is an affiliate link)

a word for Lent – Comfort

Georg Handel was a barber-surgeon in northern Germany in the 17th century. Barber-surgeons were physicians in medieval Europe who only performed surgery, often treating wounds from war injuries. Eventually, surgery and barbery became separate occupations.

 Comfort for God’s People

 Comfort, comfort my people, says your God.
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem  and proclaim to her
that her hard service has been completed,
    that her sin has been paid for,
that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for all her sins.

 

A voice of one calling:
“In the wilderness prepare the way for the Lord;
make straight in the desert a highway for our God.”

man standing in a road
photo from Lightstock.com, stock photo site, an affiliate link 

Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low;

the rough ground shall become level ,the rugged places a plain.

 And the glory of the Lord will be revealed and all people will see it together.
For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”

Isaiah 40 (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

“every valley”

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. also quoted this scripture passage in his iconic “I have a dream” speech. Read about it here-

Remembering Dr. King’s dream

The Handel family

Georg Handel was a barber-surgeon in northern Germany in the 17th century. Barber-surgeons were physicians in medieval Europe who only performed surgery, often treating wounds from war injuries. Eventually, surgery and barbery became separate occupations.

I’m glad his son, George did not follow his father into medicine. Instead George Frideric Handel studied music and eventually composed his masterpiece , Messiah, first performed in 1742, and which  millions of people have listened to or sang since then.

Listen on Apple Music – an affiliate link , the commission supports this blog

HANDEL'S MESSIAH- A SOULFUL CELEBRATION album cover

We usually associate  Messiah with Christmas, but Handel wrote it to be performed at Easter. He drew the words of the songs from Scripture, choosing passages that tell the story of God sending Jesus to earth to redeem His people.

sharing words of faith, hope, and love

I would love for you to start following Watercress Words : use this form to get an email notification of new posts . Please find and follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and LinkedIn. Thanks so much.

                              Dr. Aletha 

"faith, hope, love" each word written on a card, strung on a line with clothes pins
Lightstock.com graphic; find it at this link

a word for Lent – Rest

My Lent series features scripture songs from Handel’s Messiah- originally written for Easter, not Christmas

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

 Matthew 11 (NIV)

11 He tends his flock like a shepherd:
    He gathers the lambs in his arms
and carries them close to his heart;
    he gently leads those that have young.

Isaiah 40(NIV)

a lamb standing in tall grass
photo credit -LIGHTSTOCK.COM, affiliate link

Easter-and Messiah

We usually associate  Messiah with Christmas, but Handel wrote it to be performed at Easter. He drew the words of the songs from Scripture, choosing passages that tell the story of God sending Jesus to earth to redeem His people.

Handel’s Messiah has three acts, so many performances and recordings of Messiah use only the most popular songs, since the entire work is lengthy. This article will tell you about some of the songs you may already know including two that I have used in this series.

Exploring the HEART of faith, hope, and love

I would love for you to start following Watercress Words : use this form to get an email notification of new posts . Please find and follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and LinkedIn. Thanks so much.

Here are some affiliate links you may find helpful. Thanks for considering and using, which helps me fund this blog’s mission-to share the HEART of health.

                              Dr. Aletha 

World Vision – Sponsor A Child Today. Help give children a better future. Sponsor a child through World Vision and change a child's life and community for good. Lent & Easter 2020 Resources at Cokesbury. Everything you need to prepare for Lent & Easter. Studies, altarware, paraments, and more. Valid through 3/31. Shop Now!

A word for Lent-Light

Handel used the lyrics from a preacher Charles Jennens, who wrote out the whole piece as a collage of Bible verses designed to tell a story about the Messiah.

9:2 The people walking in darkness have seen a great light;

on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned.

60:1 “Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon you.

 
2 See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the LORD rises upon you and his glory appears over you.
 
3 Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.
 
woman raising arms arms to the sky in a glow of light
photo from the LIGHTSTOCK.COM  collection, an affiliate link 

Isaiah 

 THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®.  NIV®.  Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica.  All rights reserved worldwide.
 
 

Handel’s Messiah

We usually associate  Messiah with Christmas, but Handel composed it to be performed at Easter.
 
HANDEL'S MESSIAH- A SOULFUL CELEBRATION album cover
 
 
 
 
 
 “Handel used the lyrics from a preacher  Charles Jennens, who wrote out the whole piece as a collage of Bible verses designed to tell a story about the Messiah.
 
In some cases Jennens copied verses from the King James Version of the Bible directly, and in other cases he abridged or modified the wording of the Bible verses somewhat to fit into something that could be set to music and sung. He also decided to change the “point of view” in a couple of places.
 
Rather than quoting Jesus’ words about himself directly, for instance, he made a few changes so that the singers are singing about Jesus rather than portraying the role of Jesus.”
 
quoted from wheatwilliams.com
 
 

You may also enjoy this post –

“Georg Handel was a barber-surgeon in northern Germany in the 17th century. Barber-surgeons were physicians in medieval Europe who only performed surgery, often treating wounds from war injuries. Eventually, surgery and barbery became separate occupations.”

sharing the HEART of faith, hope, and love

I would love for you to start following Watercress Words : use this form to get an email notification of new posts . Please find and follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and LinkedIn. Thanks so much.

Here are some affiliate links you may find helpful. Thanks for considering and using, which helps me fund this blog’s mission-to share the HEART of health.

Lent & Easter 2020 Resources at Cokesbury. Everything you need to prepare for Lent & Easter. Studies, altarware, paraments, and more. Valid through 3/31. Shop Now! World Vision – Gift Catalogue. Give a gift that will make a difference in the lives of vulnerable children and their communities. Shop now.

Dr. Aletha 

Wrestling with the challenge of evil

Where is God when evil seems to triumph? How can we pray, what can we pray when God seems powerless? Theologians have struggled with these questions for centuries, but there are no neat answers.

During his Sermon on the Mount in Matthew , Jesus taught,

“This, then, is how you should pray:

“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done,
    on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
    as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
    but deliver us from the evil one.

artwork photographed by Dr. Aletha

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

The Practice of Prayer

by Margaret Guenther

Writing in The Practice of Prayer, Episcopal priest Margaret Guenther says

“I have great respect for evil and become uncomfortable when we trivialize and try to domesticate it, or even turn it into entertainment via mediocre movies. Most simply put, it is manifested in consistent, conscious choices made in diametrical oposition to the God of love.

Where is God when evil seems to triumph? How can we pray, what can we pray when God seems powerless? Theologians have struggled with these questions for centuries, but there are no neat answers.

Ultimately, we are left with Job, baffled yet willing to let God be God. (Job, a Bible character who suffered multiple undeserved tragedies.-blogger’s note)

The question of evil will not go away that simply. We are supposed to be praying and, quite possibly wrestling as well- with our questions, with our doubts, with God. ”

Evil, whether in the actions of an individual or in the behavior of whole nations, is a challenge to our prayer.

Margaret Guenther

This quote is based on a book from an affiliate link.

exploring faith, hope, and love

Thanks for joining me to consider the Lord’s Prayer and Ms. Guenther’s teaching. I hope to share more from her so please come back. I invite you to

Join my Reader Rewards Club
READ.REVIEW.REDEEM myReader rewards club

My Reader Rewards Club is a great way to earn free books and Bibles for yourself, friends, and family! Your journey to earning free faith-based products starts HERE.
(When you sign up through these links, I can earn free books too.)

I would love for you to start following Watercress Words : use this form to get an email notification of new posts . Please find and follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and LinkedIn. Thanks so much.

                              Dr. Aletha 

"faith, hope, love" each word written on a card, strung on a line with clothes pins
Lightstock.com graphic; find it at this link

use Lightstock.com, stock photos and other media, affiliate link to help fund this blog

300x250