"God is good, a hiding place in tough times. He recognizes and welcomes anyone looking for help, No matter how desperate the trouble." (Nahum 1 "The Message")
"God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us, so that we’re free of worry on Judgment Day—our standing in the world is identical with Christ’s. There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a fearful life—fear of death, fear of judgment—is one not yet fully formed in love." (1 John 4 - "The Message")
"The world is unprincipled. It’s dog-eat-dog out there! The world doesn’t fight fair. But we don’t live or fight our battles that way—never have and never will. The tools of our trade aren’t for marketing or manipulation, but they are for demolishing that entire massively corrupt culture. We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. Our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and building lives of obedience into maturity." (2 Corinthians 10 "The Message")
"There’s more to come: We continue to shout our praise even when we’re hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next. In alert expectancy such as this, we’re never left feeling shortchanged. Quite the contrary—we can’t round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit!" (Romans 5 - "The Message")
Canzada Pierce Bird
My great-great-grandmother was in her mid-twenties when she collapsed in the yard while walking toward the barn. Her and my great-great-granddad were sharecroppers in Arkansas at the time. My great-granddad was a small boy and was herding some cows back into the pin when he saw his mother fall. He quickly ran toward his mother's side. He cried out for help, and soon they took the young woman into the house. They sent for a doctor, but before help could arrive my great-great-grandmother died.
Years later, when my great-granddad would speak of his mother, he would say something like, "she was a tall, slender, beautiful woman and is buried in Hope." He was talking about Hope, Arkansas where they lived at the time of her death.
I started writing about my granddad a while back. I decided to launch the book with the story of his grandmother. The words of my great-granddad kept ringing in my mind, "buried in Hope." I felt moved to ponder the larger meaning of those words. Sure, she was indeed buried in Hope. But as a believer of the Gospel, she knew of the hope found in Christ. That "blessed hope" talked about in Titus ("...looking for the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.")
Suddenly, the thoughts of the book about by granddad took on a different light. My granddad, Gus Bird died when he was just forty-eight years old. Not long before he died, he was a pioneering Pentecostal preacher. He too understood that there was a blessed hope found in Christ.
This blog will talk about the book and the hope that inspired the writing. This blog is somewhat unique in that it is being kept when the book is being writing. I am excited to be able to write about that Hope! The hope that can shine through every problem, through every fear, through every trial, through every heartbreak, and yes, even can shine through every death.
Soon you will be able to read about, "Buried in Hope." Please leave comments as you read this blog. I certainly want to know your thoughts and ideas as we take this journey together.