Biblical Moment: Jesus Proclaims New 11th Commandment: Love One Another!

Biblical Moment: Jesus Proclaims New 11th Commandment at the Last Supper on Holy Thursday, also known as ‘Maundy’ Thursday!!!

“Maundy’ comes from the Latin word mandatum, or commandment, reflecting Jesus’ words “I give you a new commandment.”

When Judas had left, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in Him. If God is glorified in Him, God will also glorify Him in Himself, and He will glorify Him at once. My Children, I will be with you only a little while longer. You will look for Me, and as I told the Jews, ‘Where I go you cannot come,’ so now I say it to you. I give you a New Commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another. This is how all will know that you are My Disciples, if you have love for one another.””John 13:31-35

This is my commandment: love one another as I love you.”

—John 15:12

This I command you: love one another.”—John 15:17

For this is the message you have heard from the beginning: we should love one another.”—1 John 3:11

And His Commandment is this: we should believe in the Name of His Son, Jesus Christ, and love one another just as He commanded us.

1 John 3:23

Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God; everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God.”—1 John 4:7

Beloved, if God so loved us, we also must love one another.

—1 John 4:11

No one has ever seen God. Yet, if we love one another, God remains in us, and His Love is brought to perfection in us.”—1 John 4:12

But now, Lady, I ask you, not as though I were writing a new commandment but the one we have had from the beginning: let us love one another.2 John 5

Love one another with mutual affection; anticipate one another in showing honor.”—Romans 12:10

Owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.”—Romans 13:8

And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, just as we have for you.”—1 Thessalonians 3:12

On the subject of mutual charity you have no need for anyone to write you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love one another.

1 Thessalonians 4:9

We ought to thank God always for you, brothers, as is fitting, because your faith flourishes ever more, and the love of every one of you for one another grows ever greater.”—2 Thessalonians 1:3

Since you have purified yourselves by obedience to the truth for sincere mutual love, love one another intensely from a pure heart.

—1 Peter 1:22

Above all, let your love for one another be intense, because love covers a multitude of sins.”—1 Peter 4:8

For you were called for freedom, brothers. But do not use this freedom as an opportunity for the flesh; rather, serve one another through love.Galatians 5:13

For you were called for freedom, brothers. But do not use this freedom as an opportunity for the flesh; rather, serve one another through love. For the whole law is fulfilled in one statement, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you go on biting and devouring one another, beware that you are not consumed by one another.”—Galatians 5:13-15

I Paul, then, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to live in a manner worthy of the call you have received, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another through love, striving to preserve the Unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace: one body and one Spirit, as you were also called to the one hope of your call; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”

—Ephesians 4:1-6

Let us hold unwaveringly to our confession that gives us hope, for He who made the promise is trustworthy. We must consider how to rouse one another to love and good works. We should not stay away from our assembly, as is the custom of some, but encourage one another, and this all the more as you see the day drawing near.”—Hebrews 10:23-25

Biblical Moment: The Events of Holy Wednesday during Holy Week Leading Up to Easter!

Biblical Moment: The Events of Holy Wednesday during Holy Week Leading Up to Easter Sunday!

On Holy Wednesday, also known as Spy Wednesday, we remember that Jesus was betrayed by Judas, a clandestine spy among His Disciples. Then, as the Gospel of Luke is written, Satan entered into Judas and he deceived and betrayed Our Lord and Savior.

How many times do we deny, justify or rationalize our thoughts, words, and behaviors?

While I think (and most agree) in a worldly sense I am a really good guy. I was a decent husband and good father too! But I also know in truth, to be honest, there were many times in my life I let folks down too! I am far, far from being perfect but have for the most part done my best. I rejoice in knowing God The Father, The Holy Spirit and Jesus, my Lord and Savior have forgiven me and love me dearly even more so than I love myself. I am blessed with a wonderful family and so many friends who help me celebrate this thing called life!

TROML Baby (an Exclamation of Joy and Gratitude)!!!

The Lenten Season is not yet over! We still have time to prepare; especially within our hearts, souls, and bodies for this solemn opportunity to grow closer to God, ourselves and each other.

The biblical references for the events of Holy Wednesday center around this preparedness. Are we ready to experience the Death, Crucifixion, and Resurrection of Jesus?

The Christian Holy Week continues tomorrow with Holy Thursday—wrapping up the last week of the Lenten Season—Palm Sunday (Jesus Enters Jerusalem apparently as a King)—Holy Monday (Cleansing of the Temple)—Holy Tuesday (Parables of the Talents and Ten Virgins)—Holy Wednesday (Betrayal by Judas)—Holy Thursday (Washing of the Feet and the Last Supper)—Good Friday (Passion, Crucifixion, and Death of Jesus on the Cross at Calvary)—Holy Saturday (Jesus Lays in the Tomb on the Sabbath)—and Easter Sunday (Resurrection of Jesus; The Empty Tomb and The Good News).

God Bless and see you on the other side!

 

Then one of the Twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, “What are you willing to give me if I hand Jesus over to you?” They paid him thirty pieces of silver, and from that time on he looked for an opportunity to hand Him over.”

Matthew 26:14-16

 

Then Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve, went off to the chief priests to hand Jesus over to them. When they heard him they were pleased and promised to pay him money. Then he looked for an opportunity to hand Him over.”—Mark 14:10-11

 

Now the feast of Unleavened Bread, called the Passover, was drawing near, and the chief priests and the scribes were seeking a way to put Jesus to death, for they were afraid of the people. Then Satan entered into Judas, the one surnamed Iscariot, who was counted among the Twelve, and he went to the chief priests and temple guards to discuss a plan for handing Him over to them. They were pleased and agreed to pay him money. He accepted their offer and sought a favorable opportunity to hand Him over to them in the absence of a crowd.”

Luke 22:1-6

 

Six days before Passover Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. They gave a dinner for Him there, and Martha served, while Lazarus was one of those reclining at table with Him. Mary took a liter of costly perfumed oil made from genuine aromatic nard and anointed the feet of Jesus and dried them with her hair; the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil. Then Judas the Iscariot, one of His Disciples, and the one who would betray Him, said, “Why was this oil not sold for three hundred days’ wages and given to the poor?” He said this not because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief and held the money bag and used to steal the contributions. So Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Let her keep this for the day of My Burial. You always have the poor with you, but you do not always have Me.”—John 12:1-8

 

Assist us mercifully with Thy Help, O Lord God our salvation, that we may enter with joy upon the meditation of those mighty acts through which Thou hast given unto us life and immortality; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”—Methodist Collect for Holy Tuesday

 

 

Biblical Moment: The Events of Holy Tuesday during Holy Week Leading Up to Easter!

Biblical Moment: The Events of Holy Tuesday during Holy Week Leading Up to Easter!

My childhood memory recalls Palm Sunday and then a skip to The Last Supper on Holy Thursday; with Holy Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday as being some kind of filler to make Holy Week a full week.

Nothing can be further from the truth as with Jesus the unexpected are expected and the common place seem to become miraculous!

Maybe we should look as Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday as a one-two-three-are we ready for the Passion of Our Lord and Savior; His Suffering which likely will be our suffering to some degree, hopefully minimal, as we age, decline and ultimately die with nobody other than Our Lord and Savior.

The Lenten Season is not over! We still have time to prepare; especially within our hearts, souls, and bodies.

The biblical references for the events of Holy Tuesday center around this preparedness. Are we ready to experience the Death, Crucifixion, and Resurrection of Jesus?

What sort of Virgin are we in the Parable of the Ten Virgins below? Is our bodily temple ready to finish the race strong? Do we do our spiritual exercises so as to always be in the right spiritual frame of mind? Are we gassed up like our cars all ready to go the distance of needed in an emergency?

What have we done with the gifts God has bestowed on each and every one of us? Have we given up trying to seek and find them? Are we still developing them and using them according to the Will of God or our own pride and ego-driven ways?

Are our talents buried in the ground like the one who received one talent in the Parable of the Talents? What are we missing out on in life as designed by God? True Love and deep and meaningful relationships with others? First with ourselves? We can only give away what we have.

The Christian Holy Week continues tomorrow with Holy Wednesday—wrapping up the last week of the Lenten Season—Palm Sunday (Jesus Enters Jerusalem apparently as a King)—Holy Monday (Cleansing of the Temple)—Holy Tuesday (Parables of the Talents and Ten Virgins)—Holy Wednesday (Betrayal by Judas)—Holy Thursday (Washing of the Feet and the Last Supper)—Good Friday (Passion, Crucifixion, and Death of Jesus on the Cross at Calvary)—Holy Saturday (Jesus Lays in the Tomb on the Sabbath)—and Easter Sunday (Resurrection of Jesus; The Empty Tomb and The Good News).

God Bless and see you on the other side!

Then the Kingdom of Heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones, when taking their lamps, brought no oil with them, but the wise brought flasks of oil with their lamps. Since the bridegroom was long delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep. At midnight, there was a cry, ‘Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’ Then all those virgins got up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise ones replied, ‘No, for there may not be enough for us and you. Go instead to the merchants and buy some for yourselves.’ While they went off to buy it, the bridegroom came and those who were ready went into the wedding feast with him. Then the door was locked. Afterwards the other virgins came and said, ‘Lord, Lord, open the door for us!’ But He said in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, I do not know you.’ Therefore, stay awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour.”

Matthew 25:1-13 (The Parable of the Ten Virgins)

It will be as when a man who was going on a journey called in his servants and entrusted his possessions to them. To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one—to each according to his ability.

Then he went away. Immediately the one who received five talents went and traded with them, and made another five. Likewise, the one who received two made another two. But the man who received one went off and dug a hole in the ground and buried his master’s money.

After a long time the master of those servants came back and settled accounts with them. The one who had received five talents came forward bringing the additional five. He said, ‘Master, you gave me five talents. See, I have made five more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’

Then the one who had received two talents also came forward and said, ‘Master, you gave me two talents. See, I have made two more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’

Then the one who had received the one talent came forward and said, ‘Master, I knew you were a demanding person, harvesting where you did not plant and gathering where you did not scatter; so out of fear I went off and buried your talent in the ground. Here it is back.’ His master said to him in reply, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I did not plant and gather where I did not scatter? Should you not then have put my money in the bank so that I could have got it back with interest on my return?

Now then! Take the talent from him and give it to the one with ten. For to everyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. And throw this useless servant into the darkness outside, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.”—Matthew 25:14-30 (The Parable of the Talents)

Other readings to ponder this Holy Tuesday:

God said to me, You are My Servant, in you, Israel, I show My Glory… I will make you a light to the nations, that My Salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”—Isaiah 49:3,6

In you, Lord, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. In Your Justice rescue and deliver me; listen to me and save me! Be my rock of refuge, my stronghold to give me safety; for You are my rock and fortress. My God, rescue me from the hand of the wicked, from the clutches of the evil and violent. You are my hope, Lord; my trust, God, from my youth. On You I have depended since birth; from my mother’s womb You are my strength; my hope in You never wavers.”

Psalm 71

My mouth shall proclaim your just deeds, day after day your acts of deliverance, though I cannot number them all.”—Psalm 71:15

God, you have taught me from my youth; to this day I proclaim your wondrous deeds.”—Psalm 71:17

Then Job arose and tore his cloak and cut off his hair. He fell to the ground and worshiped. He said, “Naked I came forth from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I go back there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord!” In all this Job did not sin, nor did he charge God with wrong.”—Job 1:20-22

The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the Power of God. For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the learning of the learned I will set aside.”

Where is the wise one? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made the wisdom of the world foolish? For since in the Wisdom of God the world did not come to know God through wisdom, it was the Will of God through the foolishness of the proclamation to save those who have faith. For Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom, but we proclaim Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those who are called, Jews and Greeks alike, Christ the Power of God and he Wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.”—1 Corinthians 1:18-25

Consider your own calling, brothers. Not many of you were wise by human standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. Rather, God chose the foolish of the world to shame the wise, and God chose the weak of the world to shame the strong, and God chose the lowly and despised of the world, those who count for nothing, to reduce to nothing those who are something, so that no human being might boast before God. It is due to him that you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God, as well as righteousness, sanctification, and redemption, so that, as it is written, “Whoever boasts, should boast in the Lord.”—1 Corinthians 1:26-31

Almighty, everlasting God, grant us so perfectly to follow the passion of our Lord, that we may obtain the help and pardon of His all-sufficient grace; through Him who lives and reigns with You, in the Unity of the Holy Spirit, world without end. Amen.”—Methodist Collect for Holy Tuesday

Biblical Moment: The Events of Holy Monday during Holy Week Leading Up to Easter!

Biblical Moment: The Events of Holy Monday during Holy Week Leading Up to Easter!

All of the 40 days and 40 nights of the Lenten Season and the early part of Holy Week is a preparation for the events to come later in the week—namely the Passion. Death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

This preparation also occurs within us—within our hearts, souls, and bodies.

The events of Holy Monday come to us to serve that purpose, to get us ready for the opportunity that will present itself come the Holy Weekend—to believe in the Resurrection of Jesus and in so doing so receive the gift of Salvation, Spiritual Freedom, and Eternal Lifer right here, right now as we live out the rest of our lives on Planet Earth.

Jesus is safe from persecution during the Passover Festival out of fear of what his loyal disciples and followers with do if He is harmed. An odd sort of irony as the week unfolds. Jesus comes across a barren fig tree and withers it to death as a premonition as to what will happen to Israel in the days ahead. Then Jesus cleanses the Temple kicking out the business people from “God’s House of Prayer for All Peoples!” Jesus’ Authority is questioned by the chief priests but it is a question with an unspoken definitive answer—YES!

And finally on Holy Monday, Jesus’ Body is anointed with perfume as an antecedent to His Death and Burial.

The Christian Holy Week continues tomorrow with Holy Tuesday—the last week of the Lenten Season—Palm Sunday (Jesus Enters Jerusalem apparently as a King)—Holy Monday (Cleansing of the Temple)—Holy Tuesday (Parable of the Talents)—Holy Wednesday (Betrayal by Judas)—Holy Thursday (Washing of the Feet and the Last Supper)—Good Friday (Passion, Crucifixion, and Death of Jesus on the Cross at Calvary)—Holy Saturday (Jesus Lays in the Tomb on the Sabbath)—and Easter Sunday (Resurrection of Jesus; The Empty Tomb and The Good News).

God Bless and see you on the other side!

Jesus is Safe during the Passover Festival:

“When Jesus finished all these words, he said to His Disciples, “You know that in two days’ time it will be Passover, and the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified.” Then the chief priests and the elders of the people assembled in the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas, and they consulted together to arrest Jesus by treachery and put Him to death. But they said, “Not during the festival, that there may not be a riot among the people.”—Matthew 26:1-5

“The Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread were to take place in two days’ time. So the chief priests and the scribes were seeking a way to arrest Him by treachery and put Him to death. They said, “Not during the festival, for fear that there may be a riot among the people.”—Mark 14:1-2

In the Old Testament the symbol of the fig tree represents Israel. The message here from Jesus is that Israel has failed and will be destroyed, same as the fig tree withers and dies. In the Gospel of Luke the focus shifts to redemption, that the leaders and people of Israel who might still hear Jesus and repent to be ready for the coming Kingdom of God:

“When Jesus was going back to the city in the morning, He was hungry. Seeing a fig tree by the road, He went over to it, but found nothing on it except leaves. And He said to it, “May no fruit ever come from you again.” And immediately the fig tree withered. When the disciples saw this, they were amazed and said, “How was it that the fig tree withered immediately?” Jesus said to them in reply, “Amen, I say to you, if you have faith and do not waver, not only will you do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ it will be done. Whatever you ask for in prayer with faith, you will receive.”—Matthew 21:18-22

“The next day as they were leaving Bethany Jesus was hungry. Seeing from a distance a fig tree in leaf, He went over to see if He could find anything on it. When He reached it He found nothing but leaves; it was not the time for figs. And He said to it in reply, “May no one ever eat of your fruit again!” And His Disciples heard it.”—Mark 11:12-14

“Early in the morning, as they were walking along, they saw the fig tree withered to its roots. Peter remembered and said to Jesus, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree that You cursed has withered.” Jesus said to them in reply, “Have faith in God. Amen, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it shall be done for him. Therefore I tell you, all that you ask for in prayer, believe that you will receive it and it shall be yours. When you stand to pray, forgive anyone against whom you have a grievance, so that your Heavenly Father may in turn forgive you your transgressions.”—Mark 11:20-25

“And Jesus told them this parable: “There once was a person who had a fig tree planted in his orchard, and when he came in search of fruit on it but found none, he said to the gardener, ‘For three years now I have come in search of fruit on this fig tree but have found none. So cut it down. Why should it exhaust the soil?’ He said to him in reply, ‘Sir, leave it for this year also, and I shall cultivate the ground around it and fertilize it; it may bear fruit in the future. If not you can cut it down.’””—Luke 13:6-9

“Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how many times I yearned to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were unwilling! Behold, your house will be abandoned. But I tell you, you will not see Me until the time comes when you say, ‘Blessed is He who Comes in the Name of the Lord.’”

Jesus Cleanses the Temple:

“Then Jesus entered the Temple and drove out all who were selling and buying in the temple, and He overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. He said to them, “It is written, ‘My House shall be called a House of Prayer’; but you are making it a den of robbers.”

The blind and the lame came to Jesus in the Temple, and He cured them. But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the amazing things that He did, and heard the children crying out in the Temple, “Hosanna to the Son of David,” they became angry and said to Him, “Do you hear what these are saying?” Jesus said to them, “Yes; have you never read, ‘Out of the mouths of infants and nursing babies you have prepared Praise for Yourself?’” He left them, went out of the city to Bethany, and spent the night there.”—Matthew 21:12-17

“They came to Jerusalem, and on entering the Temple area Jesus began to drive out those selling and buying there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who were selling doves. He did not permit anyone to carry anything through the temple area. Then He taught them saying, “Is it not written: ‘My House shall be called a House of Prayer for All Peoples’? But you have made it a den of thieves.” The chief priests and the scribes came to hear of it and were seeking a way to put Him to death, yet they feared Him because the whole crowd was astonished at His Teaching. When evening came, they went out of the city.”—Mark 11:15-19

“Then Jesus entered the Temple and began to drive out those who were selling things there; and He said, “It is written, ‘My house shall be a House of Prayer’; but you have made it a den of robbers.”

Every day Jesus was teaching in the Temple. The chief priests, the scribes, and the leaders of the people kept looking for a way to kill Him; but they did not find anything they could do, for all the people were spellbound by what they heard.”—Luke 19:45-48

“The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the Temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. Making a whip of cords, He drove all of them out of the Temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. He told those who were selling the doves, “Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s House a marketplace!””—John 2:13-16

Jesus’ Authority is Questioned:

“When Jesus had come into the Temple area, the chief priests and the elders of the people approached Him as He was teaching and said, “By what authority are you doing these things? And who gave you this authority?” Jesus said to them in reply, “I shall ask you one question, and if you answer it for me, then I shall tell you by what authority I do these things. Where was John’s baptism from? Was it of heavenly or of human origin?” They discussed this among themselves and said, “If we say ‘Of heavenly origin,’ He will say to us, ‘Then why did you not believe him?’ But if we say, ‘Of human origin,’ we fear the crowd, for they all regard John as a Prophet.” So they said to Jesus in reply, “We do not know.” He himself said to them, “Neither shall I tell you by what authority I do these things.”

—Matthew 21:23-27

Jesus’ Body is Anointed with Perfume as an Antecedent to His Death and Burial:

“Now when Jesus was in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came up to him with an alabaster jar of costly perfumed oil, and poured it on His Head while He was reclining at table. When the disciples saw this, they were indignant and said, “Why this waste? It could have been sold for much, and the money given to the poor.” Since Jesus knew this, He said to them, “Why do you make trouble for the woman? She has done a good thing for me. The poor you will always have with you; but you will not always have Me. In pouring this perfumed oil upon My Body, she did it to prepare me for burial. Amen, I say to you, wherever this gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be spoken of, in memory of her.”—Matthew 26:6-13

“When He was in Bethany reclining at table in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of perfumed oil, costly genuine spikenard. She broke the alabaster jar and poured it on His Head. There were some who were indignant. “Why has there been this waste of perfumed oil? It could have been sold for more than three hundred days’ wages and the money given to the poor.” They were infuriated with her. Jesus said, “Let her alone. Why do you make trouble for her? She has done a good thing for Me. The poor you will always have with you, and whenever you wish you can do good to them, but you will not always have Me. She has done what she could. She has anticipated anointing My Body for burial. Amen, I say to you, wherever the gospel is proclaimed to the whole world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.”—Mark 14:3-9

“Six days before Passover Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. They gave a dinner for Him there, and Martha served, while Lazarus was one of those reclining at table with Him. Mary took a liter of costly perfumed oil made from genuine aromatic nard and anointed the feet of Jesus and dried them with her hair; the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil. Then Judas the Iscariot, one of His Disciples, and the one who would betray Him, said, “Why was this oil not sold for three hundred days’ wages and given to the poor?” He said this not because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief and held the money bag and used to steal the contributions. So Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Let her keep this for the day of My Burial. You always have the poor with you, but you do not always have Me.”—John 12:1-8

Biblical Moment: Jesus Entering Jerusalem on Pam Sunday!

Biblical Moment: Jesus Entering Jerusalem on Pam Sunday!

Here are the biblical accounts of Jesus entering Jerusalem on Palm Sunday–from the four Gospels—Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. His disciples and followers thinking that he was about to become the king of the ancient secular world at the time they proclaimed: “Blessed is the kingdom of our father David that is to come!”

Thus starts the Christian Holy Week—the last week of the Lenten Season—Palm Sunday—Holy Monday (Cleansing of the Temple)—Holy Tuesday (Parable of the Talents)—Holy Wednesday (Betrayal by Judas)—Holy Thursday (Washing of the Feet and the Last Supper)—Good Friday (Passion, Crucifixion, and Death of Jesus on the Cross at Calvary)—Holy Saturday (Jesus Lays in the Tomb on the Sabbath)—and Easter Sunday (Resurrection of Jesus; The Empty Tomb and The Good News).

God Bless and see you on the other side!

Sunset over the Old City of Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives.

“When they drew near Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find an ass tethered, and a colt with her. Untie them and bring them here to me. And if anyone should say anything to you, reply, ‘The Master has need of them.’ Then he will send them at once.” This happened so that what had been spoken through the prophet might be fulfilled: “Say to daughter Zion, ‘Behold, your King comes to you, meek and riding on an ass, and on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.’”

The disciples went and did as Jesus had ordered them. They brought the ass and the colt and laid their cloaks over them, and He sat upon them. The very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and strewed them on the road. The crowds preceding Him and those following kept crying out and saying: “Hosanna to the Son of David; blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the Highest.” And when He entered Jerusalem the whole city was shaken and asked, “Who is this?” And the crowds replied, “This is Jesus The Prophet, from Nazareth in Galilee.”—Matthew 21:1-11

 

Sunset from the Mount of Olives overlooking The Old City in Jerusalem!

“When they drew near to Jerusalem, to Bethphage and Bethany at the Mount of Olives, He sent two of His Disciples and said to them, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately on entering it, you will find a colt tethered on which no one has ever sat. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone should say to you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ reply, ‘The Master has need of it and will send it back here at once.’” So they went off and found a colt tethered at a gate outside on the street, and they untied it. Some of the bystanders said to them, “What are you doing, untying the colt?” They answered them just as Jesus had told them to, and they permitted them to do it. So they brought the colt to Jesus and put their cloaks over it. And He sat on it. Many people spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut from the fields. Those preceding Him as well as those following kept crying out: Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the kingdom of our father David that is to come! Hosanna in the Highest!”

He entered Jerusalem and went into the temple area. He looked around at everything and, since it was already late, went out to Bethany with the Twelve.”—Mark 11:1-11

“As he drew near to Bethphage and Bethany at the place called the Mount of Olives, He sent two of His Disciples. He said, “Go into the village opposite you, and as you enter it you will find a colt tethered on which no one has ever sat. Untie it and bring it here. And if anyone should ask you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ you will answer, ‘The Master has need of it.’” So those who had been sent went off and found everything just as he had told them. And as they were untying the colt, its owners said to them, “Why are you untying this colt?” They answered, “The Master has need of it.” So they brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks over the colt, and helped Jesus to mount. As He rode along, the people were spreading their cloaks on the road; and now as He was approaching the slope of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of His Disciples began to praise God aloud with joy for all the mighty deeds they had seen. They proclaimed: “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord. Peace in heaven and glory in the highest.”

Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Him, “Teacher, rebuke Your Disciples.” He said in reply, “I tell you, if they keep silent, the stones will cry out!”

As He drew near, He saw the city and wept over it, saying, “If this day you only knew what makes for peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes. For the days are coming upon you when your enemies will raise a palisade against you; they will encircle you and hem you in on all sides. They will smash you to the ground and your children within you, and they will not leave one stone upon another within you because you did not recognize the time of your visitation.”—Luke 19:29-44

“On the next day, when the great crowd that had come to the feast heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, they took palm branches and went out to meet Him, and cried out: Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord, even the king of Israel.”

Jesus found an ass and sat upon it, as is written: “Fear no more, O daughter Zion; see, your King comes, seated upon an ass’s colt.”

His Disciples did not understand this at first, but when Jesus had been glorified they remembered that these things were written about Him and that they had done this for Him. So the crowd that was with Him when he called Lazarus from the tomb and raised him from death continued to testify. This was also why the crowd went to meet Him, because they heard that He had done this sign. So the Pharisees said to one another, “You see that you are gaining nothing. Look, the whole world has gone after Him.”—John 12:12-19

Sarita May, A Beautiful, Graceful Southern Lady from Winston-Salem, North Carolina!

Ponte Vedra Beach’s Sarita May, A Beautiful, Graceful Southern Lady from Winston-Salem, North Carolina!

Direct from Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Ponte Vedra Beach's own Sarita May!

Direct from Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Ponte Vedra Beach’s own Sarita May!

One always remembers the very first person they meet when moving to a new area. When I rolled into Ponte Vedra Beach on Monday evening, February 11th, 2008 I joked, but it was true, that I was unemployed, homeless, and drove a minivan (with a motorcycle in tow). Coming from Texas Sarita graciously welcomed me into her home for the first two weeks so that I could get oriented to the Modern Capital of the Golf World and begin a new career in golf!

My TROML Journal entry for that very first night referenced this Southern Angel Lady as a “gift from God—my new friend Sarita May.”

Sarita's Gang, circa 2011, (L to R): Yours Tuly, Hers Truly, Chris. Sarah, & Margaret.

Sarita’s Gang, circa 2011, (L to R): Yours Tuly, Hers Truly, Chris. Sarah, & Margaret.

Along with Sarita, there was the expected “Welcoming Committee” to check out this new house guest—the neighborhood guy Chris, Alice from across the street and Chris’ house guest Mark. There were questions and conversations; a good time was had by all! This Southern Hospitality, meeting the ever expanding Sarita connections in Ponte Vedra, went on for the first two weeks! The time was well spent establishing myself in the golf community and preparing to go “out on tour” for the 4-week Florida Swing through Palm Beach Gardens,Tampa, Orlando, and Miami. By the time I left I had a job with NBC Sports during the Florida Swing and THE PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP at TPC Sawgrass. Life was good in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida and it all started with the hospitality of Sarita May!

Sarita hosted countless social gatherings! This one a TPC Party for Andy & friends!

Sarita hosted countless social gatherings! This one during TPC for Andy & friends!

Before I left for the Florida Swing. Sarita would invite me to join her for the 9 am Service at Christ Episcopal Church. We would stay for the Rector’s Forum afterwards to further digest the Word of God. Over the years Maria and others would join us or rather I would join them as golf and life took me far from Ponte Vedra Beach for long periods of time. We would alternate hosting brunches too once I purchased my home in January 2011.

Sarita May took care in everything she did whether as a realtor or a volunteer at Christ Church!

Sarita May took great care in everything she did whether as a realtor or a volunteer at Christ Church!

Of course, my ‘adopted Mom’ was also my real estate agent and provided many renovation suggestions for my humble abode—‘my Home Sweet Home, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ocean Grove, Creative Condo!’

A talented artist, Sarita created an extra-large impressionist painting for my newly decorated Creative Condo. Entitled “Life’s Journey Brings One to a Sunrise in Paradise,” here is the accompanying description that speaks so well of our dear and enduring friendship:

One of the many pieces of artwork created by Sarita May, this one a gift to me and of course my favorite! “Life's Journey Brings One to a Sunrise in Paradise,”

One of the many pieces of artwork created by Sarita May, this one a gift to me and of course my favorite! “Life’s Journey Brings One to a Sunrise in Paradise,”

Life’s Journey Brings One to a Sunrise in Paradise” is an Impressionist painting by Sarita May. Like Claude Monet’s 1872 piece Impression, Sunrise that defined the movement, Sarita’s creation is a landscape.

Instead of the harbour of Le Havre, France the water beneath the sunrise is the Atlantic Ocean in Sarita’s Sunrise.

A native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina she came to Ponte Vedra Beach by way of New York City where she studied art at the Institute of Design.

The artwork was requested by Sarita’s friend Andy Reistetter who came to the beach in February, 2008 to pursue a career in golf writing. Literally the first person he met was Sarita and he is happy to call her his “adopted mom” and that she chose to artistically capture his journey in Sunrise in Paradise. From Ragtime to the winding A1A that could have been an emerging hurricane the piece takes one to the palm tree gracefulness and TPC Sawgrass clubhouse in one adoring look.

But ultimately it is the beauty of Sarita’s Sunrise that captures the eye of the critic in a way that inspires one to seek and ultimately find their journey in life.

Sarita was always Number ONE!!!

Sarita was always Number ONE!!!

“Impression — I was certain of it. I was just telling myself that, since I was impressed, there had to be some impression in it … and what freedom, what ease of workmanship!” The words of Monet’s critic seem fitting for Sarita’s piece as well. Bon voyage!”

Over the years me and the ‘New Year’s Baby’ (her birthday was January 1st) grew older just like everyone else. We enjoyed our times together especially worship times at Christ Church and occasionally Pussers’ Friday happy hours on the balcony taking in a calm, sunlit late afternoon respite.

Though our seasons in life were slightly different, our love of life and our love of our Personal Savior and Lord Jesus Christ brought Sarita and I ever so close at times. Life at other times kept us separated. After a distant 2019 in which I was home in Ponte Vedra Beach only for 91 nights, we managed to come together for one last time on January 13th.

Worshiping at Christ Church...

Worshiping at Christ Church…

When I had lunch with her she was the most joyous, most living in tranquility, and most optimistic that I had known her in the 12 years of our special friendship. All of us are praying for David’s full and speedy recovery. I trust and believe in my faith that Sarita is in an even better place now, free of all pain and truly living an eternal life in love, peace, and joy!

John 14:2-3. “In my Father’s house are many rooms, if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you… that you also may be where I am.”

Sarita loved here children—Elizabeth with granddaughter Lauren and Chip with wife Holly. She also loved her little dogs as much as life itself. The name of her cherished dog—”Gracie”reflects the journey all of us traveled with Sarita these past 12 years!

An Easter Sunrise Service with Sarita...

A Christ Church Easter Sunrise Service with Sarita…

 

When I look at her painting now, Life’s Journey Brings One to a Sunrise in Paradise,” and read the description and dedication of eight years ago, I realize that we enjoyed a taste of the promised Salvation, Eternal Life, and Spiritual Freedom right here in Ponte Vedra Beach… but now Sarita’s Sunrise and her Paradise is far much better!

May God Eternally Bless my friend Sarita May!

PLEASE NOTE:   Sarita May was tragically killed in a senseless car accident on A1A in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida on Monday Evening February 17th, 2020.

Eulogy of Sarita May Sparrow

I am grateful for this opportunity to say a few words about my dear friend Sarita. My heart goes out to her husband, her family, the Christ Church Community and all of Sarita’s friends. I feel your pain and loss too. This indeed will be a sorrowful Lenten Season.

I am wearing a tuxedo today because Sarita told me that if I ever gave her eulogy that I need to wear a tuxedo while doing so. Thank you Sarita. This is the first time that I ever had to fast on Fat Tuesday and Ash Wednesday so I could fit into this thing!

(Tapping chest, find another eulogy in the of the tuxedo)

Oh, and look here she even left me the eulogy to read…

The first thing being that her reported age was incorrect. She is forever 72. If retractions are not published quickly there will be Old Testament wrath to pay.

Thank you for this 30 minutes to share… what, only 3 minutes? Who ever here said hello OR GOODBYE to Sarita in 3 minutes? If you went to her house planning to leave in 30 minutes, it was always 3 hours later…

Before I make Sarita out to be the saint that she actually was… and nominate her for the Woman of the Year, yes Woman of the Year… I have to be honest and report that like all of us she was not perfect.

The only example I can recall of a Sarita imperfection, let’s call it Sarita’s inability to admit that she was wrong and to apologize. The closest I ever got to an apology was… “Andy, you must have misinterpreted what I said.”

Andy, you are 60 years old, here is how you should think, here is what you should do and here is how you should vote.

Sarita, let me get this straight, I am 60 years old, that is how I should think, that is what I should do, and that is how I should vote?

No Andy, you have misinterpreted what I said…

I loved Sarita May and I know everyone in this church loved her as well.

Sarita is not someone you forget. Her Southern beauty, charm, wit. She was artistic and creative with art, flowers, and food. Her life and her “way of life” were truly amazing.

I moved here 12 years ago almost to the day she passed. Sarita was the very first person I met in Ponte Vedra Beach. She graciously welcomed me into her home as her guest for the first two weeks.

My journal entry for that very first night referenced her as a “gift from God—my new friend Sarita May.”

Along with Sarita, there was the expected “Welcoming Committee” to check out this new house guest—the neighborhood guy Chris, Alice from across the street, Sarah the golf pro next door; later on Margaret, Maria, and so many more. There were questions and conversations; a good time was had by all!

This Southern Hospitality, meeting the ever expanding Sarita social network in Ponte Vedra has never really stopped for the last 12 years!

That very first weekend Sarita invited me to join her for the 9 am Service right here at Christ Episcopal Church. We would stay afterwards for the Clergy’ss Forum to learn more about the Scriptures. Over the years Maria and others would join us or rather I would join them as golf and life took me far from Ponte Vedra Beach for long periods of time. Sarita would typically host us for brunch after church.

Of course, my ‘adopted Mom,’ was also my real estate agent when I bought my home in Ponte Vedra Beach. She provided many renovation suggestions for my humble abode. As an interior decorator she was extraordinaire!

A talented artist, Sarita created an extra-large impressionist painting for my Creative Condo. Entitled “Life’s Journey Brings One to a Sunrise in Paradise,” I wrote the accompanying description for her work of art. These words speak well of our dear and enduring friendship:

A native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina Sarita May came to Ponte Vedra Beach by way of New York City where she studied art at the Institute of Design.

Like Claude Monet’s 1872 Sunrise piece that defined the Impressionist movement, Sarita’s creation was also a landscape.

Instead of the harbour of Le Havre, France the water beneath Sarita’s sunrise is our Atlantic Ocean.

In one adoring look, Sarita’s landscape takes one gracefully down a winding road from Ragtime in Atlantic Beach to the palm trees, the island green and the clubhouse at TPC Sawgrass. Like life, on some days the graceful journey appears easy yet on other days as though a hurricane is emerging.

But ultimately it is the beauty of Sarita’s Sunrise that captures the eye of the critic in a way that inspires one to seek and ultimately find their journey in life.

The original Sarita Sunrise artwork is in Westbury Hall for all to enjoy after the Service.

Over the years the ‘New Year’s Baby’ and I grew older just like everyone else. We enjoyed our times together especially worship times at Christ Church and happy hours at Pussers… our late Friday afternoon respites of sunshine, tranquility and friendship.

Life at other times kept us separated. After a distant 2019 in which I was away practically the whole year, we came together for one last time on January 13th.

That day, I am forever grateful for, Sarita was the most joyous, the most tranquil, and the most optimistic that I had known her in the 12 years of our special friendship. She was in love with David.

I mentioned “WOMAN of the YEAR’ and here is my pitch for Sarita’s nomination:

Ever since I remember the theme here at Christ Church is to: BE BOLD!

Well Sarita was a woman of faith. She was BOLD in a lot of ways and recently VICTORIOUS in one particular way.

She acted on her faith and found David again, “the love of her life” and this time married him and was preparing to move back home to North Carolina. All of this at the age of 72.

Think about that and tell me of another woman who has done such a thing purely for love?

Sarita was defined by love—the love of faith, the love of life, the love of David and the love of each one of us here today… remembering and celebrating her life.

Sarita loved her children—Sarita loved her daughter Elizabeth—Sarita loved her granddaughter Lauren—Sarita loved her son Chip and his wife Holly. She also loved little dogs. The name of her last cherished dog—”Gracie”—grace itself reflects the journey that all of us has traveled with Sarita over the years!

When I look at her painting now, ”Life’s Journey Brings One to a Sunrise in Paradise,” and read the description and dedication of eight years ago, I realize that we, you, me, and Sarita enjoyed a momentary taste of the Promised Salvation, Eternal Life, and the Spiritual Freedom to be who God destined is to be… all right here on earth; all right here in Ponte Vedra Beach… but now Sarita’s Sunrise and her Paradise is far much better!

Sarita is not gone. Her spirit will live eternally and shine brighter each day.

We miss you and love you Sarita May Sparrow

 

Twenty-five Inspirational Quotes from Kobe Bryant…

Twenty-five Inspirational Quotes from Kobe Bryant…

With all credit to Flavia Medrut -December 28, 2018

With thoughts, prayers, and special intentions for the friends of, family of, and the nine souls lost in the helicopter crash on Sunday Morning, Januray 26th, 2020—Baseball Coach John Altobelli, his wife Kerri, and daughter Alyssa; Sarah Chester and her daughter Payton; Defensive Basketball Coach Christina Mauser; Pilot Ara Zobayan; and Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna…

“This is the moment I accept the most challenging times will always be behind me and in front of me.

Everything negative – pressure, challenges – is all an opportunity for me to rise.

The most important thing is to try and inspire people so that they can be great in whatever they want to do.

Winning takes precedence over all. There’s no gray area. No almosts.

Once you know what failure feels like, determination chases success.

I realized that intimidation didn’t really exist if you’re in the right frame of mind.

I’m reflective only in the sense that I learn to move forward. I reflect with a purpose.

I’m extremely willful to win, and I respond to challenges. It’s not a challenge to me to win the scoring title, because I know I can.

My parents are my backbone. Still are. They’re the only group that will support you if you score zero or you score 40.

The beauty in being blessed with talent is rising above doubters to create a beautiful moment.

A lot of leaders fail because they don’t have the bravery to touch that nerve or strike that chord.

The moment you give up, is the moment you let someone else win.

I can’t relate to lazy people. We don’t speak the same language. I don’t understand you. I don’t want to understand you.

If you’re afraid to fail, then you’re probably going to fail.

Pain doesn’t tell you when you ought to stop. Pain is the little voice in your head that tries to hold you back because it knows if you continue you will change.

Use your success, wealth and influence to put them in the best position to realize their own dreams and find their true purpose.

If you want to be great at something, there’s a choice you have to make. What I mean by that is, there are inherent sacrifices that come along with that. Family time, hanging out with friends, being a great friend, being a great son, nephew, whatever the case may be.

We all have self-doubt. You don’t deny it, but you also don’t capitulate to it. You embrace it.

My brain . . . it cannot process failure. It will not process failure. Because if I sit there and have to face myself and tell myself, ‘You’re a failure’ . . . I think that’s almost worse than death.

The most important thing is you must put everybody on notice that you’re here and you are for real.

Trust me, setting things up right from the beginning will avoid a ton of tears and heartache…

I create my own path. It was straight and narrow. I looked at it this way: you were either in my way, or out of it.

We can always kind of be average and do what’s normal. I’m not in this to do what’s normal.

Haters are a good problem to have. Nobody hates the good ones. They hate the great ones.

It’s the one thing you can control. You are responsible for how people remember you—or don’t. So don’t take it lightly.

Wally Armstrong: GOD’s Biggest Dispenser of Mulligans in Golf & Life since 1967!!!

With Wally Armstrong at the 2020 PGA Show.

With Wally Armstrong at the 2020 PGA Show.

How better to wrap up the 2020 PGA Merchandise Show than a spiritual Discussion with Wally Armstrong, God’s No. 1 Mulligan! Armstrong, the All-American UF Gator, never won on tour finishing second three times and 5th at the 1978 Masters, but is the all-time Winner-for-God on tour and after tour! Wally has authored numerous books including “In His Grip” with Jim Sheard in 1977 and “The Mulligan” with Ken Blanchard in 2007. His faith speaks for its self; he just hugs you and loves you to God in the most comforting and extraordinary way!

With Wally Armstrong & Kenya's Emanu Kasio (Golf For Kids)

With Wally Armstrong & Kenya’s Emanu Kasio (Golf For Kids)

In 1975, Wally’s second year on tour, his eighth year into his relationship with God; the year he finished second in the Pensacola Open he was the president of the tour’s Fellowship of Christian Athletes. That year, at the 29th Pee Wee International Golf Championship, Wally gave a golf clinic to the 269 competitors from around the world. The list of notable junior golfers to attend Wally’s clinic includes Phil Mickelson, Gary Nicklaus (Jack’s son), Laura Rinker and Nancy Lopez!

What a career Wally Armstrong has had on and off the golf course! At age 74 he is growing ever stronger! God Bless Wally Armstrong!

(Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; 1-24-20)

Wally's scrapbook from 1975!

Wally’s scrapbook from 1975!

Franklin Graham’s DECISION AMERICA Tour Kicks Off in Jacksonville Beach, Florida!

Reverend Franklin Graham & Musician Jeremy Camp... a powerful Christian Duo!

Reverend Franklin Graham & Musician Jeremy Camp… a powerful Christian Duo!

Franklin Graham’s DECISION AMERICA Tour Kicks Off in Jacksonville Beach, Florida!

On a beautiful 70-degree evening, on a pavilion with lined with palm trees, and with the Atlantic Ocean as a backdrop for the stage, Jeremy Camp sang and Franklin Graham preached to kickoff a 6 city Franklin Graham DECISION AMERICA Sunshine State Tour!

Jeremy Camp rocked the seashore!

Jeremy Camp rocked the seashore!

 

As in any rock n’ roll evangelical church, Jeremy’s words of worship and wisdom got us up off our feet and praising Our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ! Jeremy and Franklin had a tough opening act to follow—Dennis Agajanian who closed with God Bless America! Jeremy’s songs spoke of his redemption and testimony to Christ—I can see—I can hear—there is nothing we can’t do—we will overcome. The trailer to his upcoming Christian biographical drama “I Still Believe” was played. Can’t wait for it to be released on March 13th!

Evangelist Franklin Graham began with a prayer but first asked everyone present to pray out loud for a few moments. The Holy Spirit was upon us!

Reverend Graham’s sermon follow a Biblical path…

1 Timothy 2:1-3: “First of all, then, I ask that supplications, prayers, petitions, and thanksgivings be offered for everyone, for kings and for all in authority, that we may lead a quiet and tranquil life in all devotion and dignity. This is good and pleasing to God our savior.”

Reverend Graham shared how much his father loved Jacksonville and that he was happy to be in the warm & sunny state of Florida!

Reverend Graham shared how much his father loved Jacksonville and that he was happy to be in the warm & sunny state of Florida!

Mark 8:36-37: “What profit is there for one to gain the whole world and forfeit his life? What could one give in exchange for his life?”

Do I believe God has forgiven my sins?

Our life is temporary… our soul is eternal…

Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Sin separates us from God…

Isaiah 59:2: “Rather, it is your crimes that separate you from your God, it is your sins that make him hide his face so that he does not hear you.”

Are your sins forgiven? Does God love you?

Confess to God, not Franklin or anybody else…

Ephesians 2:8-9: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not from you; it is the gift of God. it is not from works, so no one may boast.

Salvation is a gift from God based on faith and by grace, not by works.

Other religions but only one Jesus, one Cross…

John 3:16: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.”

DECISION ANDY (AGAIN)!!!

DECISION ANDY (AGAIN)!!!

Standing and texting I asked once again to be renewed in Christ, my Lord & Savior!

One year ago it was baptisms in the Jordan River at Yardenit and Qasr Al Yahud in Israel and Palestine respectively.

Daily it is SSS Soul-Print Spiritual Exercises to be prepared to write a third spiritual book as part of TROML 2020 (celebrating 20 years of TROML Journaling on September 3rd.

Decision. Dear God, I turn from sin. I trust in Jesus. Forgive me Jesus. Thank you for dying for my sins. Come into my heart, come in too my life. Show me God’s Will for the rest of my life! This I pray in Jesus’ name. Alleluia! www.SplendidSpiritualSelf.com

Congratulations on your decision to follow Jesus Christ! I’d like to send you the Living in Christ e-book. It contains the gospel of John and four biblical lessons to guide you in your faith. Click here to access it: http://franklingraham.live/d/O5oojV6_

It will be an amazing year and an amazing decade!

TROML Baby (an exclamation of Joy & Gratitude)

Amen! Alleluia!

 

Start of 6 city Franklin Graham DECISION AMERICA Sunshine State Tour in Jacksonville Beach! Brief exchange with Jeremy Camp leaving the stage & Mr. Graham coming on stage! Definitely a Message of HOPE! TROML Baby (an exclamation of Joy and Gratitude)!!! Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. Billy Graham Library Franklin Graham.

CLICK HERE for Reverend Franklin Graham Video!

(Andy Reistetter, Facebook Post with 1 Video; 1-11-2020)

Jeremy Camp got us hopping up & down for Jesus! Alleluia! Billy Graham Library. Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. Franklin Graham

CLICK HERE for Jeremy Camp Video!

(Andy Reistetter, Facebook Post with 1 Video; 1-11-2020)

Celebrating 22,222 Days of Life; Maybe Life is as Simple as Knowing & Counting 0,1,2,3!!!

Celebrating 22,222 Days of Life; Maybe Life is as Simple as Knowing & Counting 0,1,2,3!!!

That is a whole lot of days- 22,222!

We can’t remember them all but somehow do remember the milepost days and form a narrative around them that becomes our life story, at least to ourselves.

Maybe life is as simple as knowing and counting 0,1,2,3 you say?

Knowing what? Counting what?

For me, my way of life, which has emerged as “The Rest of My Life,” or the acronym T-R-O-M-L (pronounced “Tee-ROM-El”; sounds like ‘Tomorrow’) and being my ‘Splendid Spiritual Self’ all started with a knowing, contemplating, and living out a bible verse:

So teach us to number our days, that we may gain wisdom of heart.” —Psalm 90:12

 

I knew I wanted wisdom. I knew I wanted to live a life with heart, all my heart.

So I started counting my days…

Yes, counting my days all the way back to Day 00000… when Mom & Dad somehow expressed their love for God, each other and family in mid-January 1959 in Binghamton, New York.

The high for the day was 46 degrees, the low only 39, no appreciable precipitation and no snow on the ground! Amazing what you can google these days!

Being the youngest of six we can assume my five older siblings, the oldest being nearly 10, were soundly asleep in our tiny house at 2 Florence Street. With maybe a touch of spring in the air, step, and heart rather then a primal need for warmth in the dead cold of winter. Two years earlier to the day the record low of minus-20 degrees was set in Binghamton. That would be my kid sister!

Either way we know, or should know, realize, and worship the day we came to life along with the day we entered the world all grown up and developed as a newborn baby! Day 00000 as I mentioned above.

Day 11111 or as I would say in TROML speak; a little bit past 11 ‘thou-days,’ 11 thousand-days is a little bit harder to know precisely what was going on in my life. Google: ‘What was Andy doing on June 17, 1989?’

Official Army Records, Annual Reports, and lots of Jimmy Fallon?

Add last name and get ‘Golf is Mystical in Myrtle Beach,’ my Facebook page, and my Twitter account!

Still not relevant… pre-September, 2nd, 2000… pre-TROML… will have to go to the calendar notes!

By the way, TROML is a dynamic self-realization process; a 17-day journal-based go-within ongoing exercise that leads to the discovery of one’s ‘Splendid Spiritual Self (SSS).’ My SSS is “GOD’s TROML Baby of Joy & Gratitude!” Not a bad assignment for the rest of my life, hopefully another 30 years or so, and then ‘Beyond What Seems to Be.” Bit that is another story, another article, maybe my first spiritual YouTube video under the ‘TROML2020” umbrella?

Back to June 17th, 1989 or thereabouts…

This was a time of great spiritual growth in my life. Suffice it to say I believe Roman Catholics are ‘born again’ in the normal process and application of our religion. I felt the stirrings of Christ within me at a young age and took actions on the belief that he was my personal Savior. Far beyond knowing right from wrong and accepting myself as being imperfect, religion was a big part of our family and a big part of me, the part I could go to within and find peace, comfort, and strength as a little boy, young man, and an adult male in this crazy secular world of ours.

 

But in the years surrounding 1989, it seemed as though my religious and spiritual worlds were exploding in a good way to places deep within me and places far beyond me into all of Eternity. These new beginnings would carry me through the world of being a man, a husband, and a father; through the deaths of my father and mother in 1993 and 2001 (the night before September 11th) respectedly, respectfully, and respectively; and be transformed into the writing of my first spiritual book “LOVE, TROML (The Rest of My Life), and The Pursuit of Eternity” in 2005.

The ‘Pursuit’ always being bold and in italicized print knowing it is elusive, never fully achieved or conquered in this life for we are not GOD, we are only human beings in pursuit of knowing, loving, and trying to be GOD’s instruments in what we call ‘life.’

So teach us to number our days, that we may gain wisdom of heart.” —Psalm 90:12

Day 11111 in the narrative of my life symbolically occurred in September of 1989 in Rochester, New York.

Ironically the chair that the inward procession of Christians led me to was exactly on top of the pitcher’s mound in the now demolished Silver Baseball Stadium.

I found myself at a ‘Billy Graham Crusade’ and remember how vivid my relationship and conversations with GOD were at that time and for the most part in the days afterwards up until today.

While I did not respond through the staged altar call, I did respond with all my heart, emotion, intellect, and soul much like my father did through televised ‘Billy Graham Crusades.’ A lifetime spiritual journey is the path for all Christians, no matter their denomination or abomination. GOD has it and all of us in control.

So what does Day 22222 represent? Where is the wisdom? Where is Andy’s heart?

As best I can tell, as best as I know, ‘it’ being the third step in my simple life, the second that I had anything to do with, is all wrapped up in ‘TROML 2020.’ All wrapped up like the tenderloin in prosciutto and puffy pastry of the ultimate Beef Wellington I made for dinner last night.

TROML 2020 is a 10-point life objective centered around the 20th anniversary of TROML and SSS on September 2nd, 2020. Some points having been accomplished, some ongoing, and some yet to be started. In the big picture, TROML 2020 started with last winter’s ‘Spiritual Journey to Israel and Palestine,’ continues with more Bible and Life studies, and culminates in a third spiritual book with an associated YouTube Channel.

GOD willing, of course.

I can only hope to be here for Day 33333 in April 2050! Would that not be a beautiful Spring Day somewhere in the world?

Remember that we are in a digital world now and everything begins with nothing. Even counting now begins with a zero!

Even though our humanity and spirituality makes counting unlimited, life here on Earth is limited.

Keep it simple, especially in difficult times, take a breath and hopefully we can all count 0,1,2,3!

GOD Bless you!