Archive for November, 2016

Comfort His People, Christmas Meditations Day #2

Glad this election is over. Aren’t you? Don’t know how you voted, but these last few months have been tense–to say the least.

It’s over now. Party decisions have been made all over the United States. Now we need to lick our wounds, and heal with our fellow Americans.

We need to be comforted.

Remember when we climbed up in our mom or dad’s lap and felt their strong embrace? Maybe you didn’t. One of my most vivid memories as a child was when we went on vacation, and my daddy woke me up to put me in the car. He picked me up jammies and all, held me close and gently placed me into our beat up station wagon.

Usually, I was awake, but pretended to be asleep with my eyes held tightly shut.

Maybe you need comforting right now from life. Or a loved one’s death. Or a loved one’s absence.

I’m speaking to you, friend. Listen to this passage from Isaiah 40:1:

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

No matter who is in the Oval Office, no matter who left, or even if your dear one has been promoted to glory, you have hope.

We have hope.

It all began with a baby, in a manger.

Be comforted my friend. You have hope. It came wrapped in swaddling clothes.

Here is the link to the song of the day from Handel’s Messiah:

Are There Anniversaries in Heaven, Christmas Meditations Day 1

Today would have been my parents 68th Anniversary. They made it to 59.

Here is my question; Do they celebrate anniversaries in heaven?

Here’s my guess–yes.

The reason I say that is God is a God of celebrations. Several feasts were required of the Israelites in the Old Testament, and they continued in the New Testament. One of the feasts lasted for a week with no work and living in shelters made with branches.

That sounds like a campout to me. Cooking over an open fire, hanging out with family, friends, and neighbors. That probably would have been my favorite.

The fact is, Almighty God required everyone to stop work and celebrate.

We are getting ready for the biggest celebration of the year in America–Christmas.

Jesus–the second Person of the Trinity left heaven and miraculously condescended to earth. Born as a baby, grew up as a man, and died as our Savior.

That is something to celebrate.

To remind me of this awesome fact, I’m going to write about it in order to take the time to celebrate. So here is my first passage of Scripture to meditate on today.

“For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given,
    and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
    Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6

In America, we’ve just finished a long, mud-slinging campaign. We as a country decided who would be our President for the next four years. No, I’m not gonna go there.

Here’s my point. No matter who rules temporarily, God rules eternally through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.

That is something to celebrate…

Here is a link to help you with your own celebration, friend.

PS Ribs.

Not a Traditional Thanksgiving

The Hyltons have always been adventurous when it comes to food. My kids ate squid and mussels at a young age. In fact, one of our favorite meals to cook together is mussels fra diavlo. Sure, we love turkey, but not necessarily on the fourth Thursday of November.

Sarah is with her other family this Thanksgiving but Micah will be here on #peeledpoplarfarm.

We’re not sure of the menu. We’ve talked about everything from BBQ ribs to Chinese food. Doesn’t matter, we will be together, and may even have a few visitors.

What I am thankful for is not necessarily traditional, either. Sure, when my kids were little, we went around the table and asked everyone what they were thankful for. The expected answers always appeared: our family, house, food, dogs. All good things, yes.

But today, I’m taking a break from the traditional Thanksgiving blessings and am thanking God for a few unusual things.

First, I’d like to thank Him for things He has kept from me. Like friends. Not that I don’t have friends here in North Carolina, but they are new and we are still in the be careful what you say mode. (At least they are.)

Because of lack of friends, Tom and I have become better friends. No, he won’t go Black Friday shopping with me, but we often talk while watching re-runs of our wood stove while lounging on the couch. That is a good thing. (Except the whole lack of Black Friday shopping.)

Because of my lack of friends to confide in, I’ve had to take my thoughts, worries, and fears to the Lord. I’m glad about that, too.

The second thing I am thankful for is that I’m a nobody. Most of you already knew that, but I didn’t. I actually thought I was doing God a favor by following Him. Shoveling chicken manure in old sweats has a way of defining that.

Recently, I read of an American Christian who traveled to a foreign country and attended a secret church. In that church were men bent over from years in the rice fields.  They were not allowed an education because they were Christians. The writer also mentioned a woman who had her child taken away because she followed Christ.

In my book, these people are somebodies. But it really doesn’t matter what I think, it matters what the Creator of the universe thinks. And He is pleased.

The third thing I am thankful for is God. In my Bible reading today, Psalm 115:1 says, “Not to us, O LORD, not to us, but to Your name be glory. Because of Your lovingkindness, because of Your truth.

I’m glad the Almighty isn’t at all like me. He is unique. One-of-a-kind, Holy, and completely worthy of praise. And He is loving and kind and truthful.

I pray you will have a blessed Thanksgiving.

I’ll let you know if it’s ribs or Chinese this year. Or maybe we’ll have mussels.

Earning a Living, or Leaving a Legacy?

Earning a living or leaving a legacy? Currently, I’m not doing either.

Our farming business isn’t earning the millions I thought it would. Neither are my value-added products. For a while, i thought I’d be a famous writer, but that’s doesn’t look too promising. Plus, I’m applying for jobs, and haven’t even gotten my first interview.

I feel useless so I’ve been useless since I’m not earning a living.

So what am I doing?

Pouting. Playing solitaire.


Being lazy is one thing–and I have definitely played that role. But patiently waiting on the Lord–that’s a whole different story.

I’ve been asking myself a few questions. Maybe you have, too. Do I really believe God is sovereign? Do I really believe He provides for His children? Do I really believe He is good?

Yes, to all of those…in my mind. My heart sometimes answers differently.

Years ago, I wrote a few articles titled, “Go Back to the Rocks.” They were about how in the Old Testament, when the patriarchs had an encounter with the Almighty, they piled up a few rocks. Not my style, but obviously it was all the rage then. The picture is that the rocks reminded them of God’s faithfulness.

In those articles, I mentioned that if I piled up rocks everywhere the Lord answered me, there would be a small quarry in not only this house, but my houses in Florida.

Funny thing about rock piles, they’re just like dust,…you get used to seeing them and pretty soon, you don’t remember they are there.

So for today, I am going to remember the rock piles and God’s faithfulness to me.

And be glad.

A life verse for me is Isaiah 30:15, “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength.”

Repentance happened in my time with the Lord this morning. Now I just need to shut up and trust.

How about you? Do you want to share any “rocks” in your life? Do you need to look back and remember?

Let me know, I’d love to hear.

Don’t be Legacyless…