New Year 2016

4 Jan

My Take

DiVoran LItes

New Year 2016


Brother Lawrence in the classic The Practice of the Presence of God is quoted as having said, “There is not in the world a kind of life more sweet and delightful than that of a continual conversation with God.”

When we first moved to Florida, in 1965, our pastor, Peter Lord, talked about what morning devotionals did for him. His dear wife, Johnnie, taught her young married women’s Sunday School class to spend time with the Lord every day. She wanted us to know God and keep him in our lives and families.

One day, in a service, Pastor Lord suggested we write letters to God, I liked that because it helped get my troubles off my mind and into the hands of God. I went on to read many Christian books, and to buy big, blank journaling books. Several years ago I started sketching each day so I’d have an easy landmark to separate the days in case I wanted to find something later.

Now, well beyond the age of retirement, I take have an hour or so each morning to journal and be creative. I can’t begin to tell you how it settles me and keeps me going, no matter what is happening in our lives.

At the end of 2015 I started setting up devotional plans for 2016. I ordered a Bible verse, daily calendar so I can tear out the pages and put them in the journal for my landmark. Each day has two scriptures on it from which I may draw inspiration.

For 2016 I ordered a new set of pan paints, which I’ve always wanted. I have come to know that artful expressions of all kinds can be ways to focus on God and to praise him.

Our church gets, “The Upper Room,” and I’m also considering a subscription to, “Jesus in the Morning,” from Guideposts. Sometimes seeing scriptures and ideas juxtaposed can impart thrilling revelations.

I’ve also come across something new to me. It’s called Protestant Prayer Beads. The thought of using prayer beads made me a bit nervous, but I have to say I have liked the idea since I went to church catechism a few times with my dear friend from childhood. Something you can touch helps get you off the worry train and into green grasses. Apparently Christians used them to focus their prayers even before the rosary came along. I have ordered, A Bead and a Prayer: A Beginner’s Guide to Protestant Prayer Beads, by Kristen Vincent, (

One of my favorite scriptures is: “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” It seemed to be Johnnie Lord’s favorite, too. She said all solutions lie in the Holy Spirit Who is accessible to us.

Slowly, I’m seguing into new and exciting adventures with God. I love His promise never to leave me. (Hebrews 13:5) I know that my prayer request for peace in 1965 continually bears fruit.

Brother Lawrence

Safe in the Arms of Jesus 

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