Kudos to Microsoft for giving viewers one of the best Super Bowl commercials of 2019. You can also check out the video in the sidebar.
Two key thoughts:
- Physical differences should not deny anyone the opportunity to connect, grow, learn, and play, because when we connect, grow, learn, and play, “we all win.”
- No parent (caregiver) wants their child (no matter what age or level on the exceptional-needs spectrum) to feel like an outsider in this gift ( none of us earned it) of a world given to us all by God.
This reminds of the scripture, ‘On the contrary, it is much truer that the members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary; and those members of the body which we deem less honorable, on these we bestow more abundant honor, and our less presentable members become much more presentable, ‘ 1 Corinthians 12:22-23, New American Standard Bible (NASB)
Now back to the advertisement. I have to say what a way to endorse a product? If anyone has used it, please let me know. I’d like to share more than the commercial. For now, Microsoft wins in my book.
Hello, Ocala/Marion County, I’m pleased to announce that Shining Lights will rise again for the 2019 Spring semester of Small Groups at the Meadowbrook Church. Last Summer, when I first initiated this group, it was my primary goal to bond with people like me – siblings of “exceptional people.”
However, the focus quickly changed to include people who are caregivers, of any kind. The reasoning behind their showing up didn’t matter, although it varied. Some came to find out about local resources in the area; others wanted to meet other parents and find friendships for their special needs children; still, others simply needed to get out of the house. And soon bonds were made.
Personally, I’ve learned so much from having this open door policy to other types of caregivers, and I have seen fantastic growth in our members. We have an ahhhhmazing time: breaking bread (if you chose to bring a lunch), learning new things that add to our lives, and how to avoid “caregiving syndrome.”
So if you’re in the area and you are a caregiver of any kind or YOU’D LIKE TO BE A CAREGIVER, please join us. Our only rule is that you leave your cares at the door because this is not a counseling group.
Registration (click the link) is open to the community (and you don’t have to be a member of MBCOcala) to join the Shining Lights Small Group. Our first meeting will take place on 2/7/19 at 12:30 PM.
If you like inspirational quotes, you will likely enjoy scripture verses. Whether you consider yourself a saint or a sinner, well-formed words make us feel empowered and wise. We want to memorize them and share them with friends. And this is the case today.
Over the past year, I’ve been puzzled by the number of references in the Word and world about terms such as shining and light and brightness, so I figured, I’d take my time to collect some. Many will be in scripture form from the Bible but others may not.
So how many are there? I’m not sure. But I’m excited to try to find out. Okay. Here goes…
(These two verses came from Cherlono via a comment on another post. I’m grateful for these gifts wrapped in other Believers)
- “For You, O Lord, are my lamp; The Lord illumines and dispels my darkness. 2 Samuel 22:29, and
- The Light shines on in the darkness, and the darkness did not understand it or overpower it or appropriate it or absorb it [and is unreceptive to it]. JOHN 1:5. Both from the Amplified Version.
- You will succeed in all you do, and light will shine on your path. God brings down the proud and saves the humble. Job 22: 28-29. Be humble, y’all!
- “The righteous are like a light shining brightly; the wicked are like a lamp flickering out.” Proverbs 13:9 GNB
- You are sure that you are a guide for the blind and a light for all who are in the dark. Romans 2:19 CEV
- “Now you’ve got my feet on the life path, all radiant from the shining of your face. Ever since you took my hand, I’m on the right way.” Psalm 16:11 MSG
Shining in Perilous Times
It’s a cruel dark world out there. Ephesians 6:12 tell us so. And, unfortunately, darkness is not relegated to a specific day of the year when demons and goblins are invited to roam freely, trying to scare the life out of unsuspecting people. No, it lurks about constantly.
We see it rear it’s ugly head while watching the real (or fake news), we hear it in the constant barrage of negative political advertisements, we think it when we relive our past failures, we feel it each time a hate crime is committed, and it can be…frightening.
But with all the darkness around us, Psalm 34:5 assures us that “Those who look to Him are radiant with joy; their faces shall never be ashamed.” This was the conclusion after the fretful psalmist made his prayerful petition and was able to take his eyes off of the circumstances and lift his countenance toward the Lord. Basically, he changed his focus, and thus radiated life-giving joy with confidence.
We should all make this a practice. Imagine the people you would draw when they see you joyful in stressful times. It is also the sincerest invitation to tell someone about our source of Light with hopes that they would look to the Lord and shine radiantly, as well.
Dear Father God, in the name of Jesus, I want to shine for you today and draw others into your loving presence. Therefore, I am not going to react and whine about the darkness in this world. Instead, I ask that you would help me by your Spirit to act in faith, power, and your authority according to Ephesians 6:11-13.
This new motto of mine keeps playing in my head, “We shine brighter together.” And I believe it is true. What one person can do is great, but what two can do with the same strength becomes even greater. Even if the second person lacks as much strength, it is still better, greater, because of the two.
So imagine, more and more like-minded people getting together to believe they can accomplish…anything. Then take it a step further, and imagine that belief turning to action and finally, completion. Wow! It’s amazing what can happen when we work together.
If you’re in the area and you are a caregiver of a child or an adult, and you feel you need a little spiritual and mental support, please join us. And if you are a “sibling,” like I am, of an exceptional human being, please join us. I’d personally like to meet you. You can register by clicking here for Shining Lights Community Life Group. You need not be a member of MBCOcala to join.