Joy and Peace

Romans 15:13 – May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.

2013-12-01 - Joy and Peace (IMG_1170)What better way to find joy and peace than a beautiful fall afternoon spent out in God’s amazing creation? Sharon Woods, Sharonville, Ohio.

As we enter into the Advent season it is important to remember why we celebrate Christmas. The advertisements on television would have us believe it is all about the “things,” the diamond ring, the new <insert expensive brand name car>, the latest video game, or electronic gadget. Despite the beautiful images of happy, smiling people we see on our screens, these are not the things that fill us with joy and peace. These are not the things that will ever give us hope. They may produce temporary happiness, perhaps, but ultimately they only lead to a desire for more “things.”

As today’s Bible verse tells us, true joy and peace come “in believing.” Believing, that is, in the one for whom we celebrate Christmas, and that is Christ the Lord! It is God who fills us with that joy and peace; it is by the power of his Holy Spirit that we will abound in hope. And, it is only through Christ his Son, that babe born in a stable over 2000 years ago, that we can find this promised hope, joy, and peace.

While the beautiful fall colors may be gone, and temperatures may be a bit colder, winter is still a great time to get outside. Take some time to get away from the hustle and bustle this Christmas season and get out into God’s creation. If you do, perhaps the silence will give you a chance to reflect on why it is we celebrate Christmas.

Autumn colors will fade and the leaves will fall, the “things” we get for Christmas will lose their luster and soon be forgotten, but the love of Christ will endure forever!

Read more about my “God is Revealed…“ category of posts

© Todd D. Nystrom and Todd the Hiker, 2013.

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We All Fade Like a Leaf

Isaiah 64:6-9 –We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment. We all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away. 7 There is no one who calls upon your name, who rouses himself to take hold of you; for you have hidden your face from us, and have made us melt in the hand of our iniquities. 8 But now, O LORD, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand. 9 Be not so terribly angry, O LORD, and remember not iniquity forever. Behold, please look, we are all your people.

2013-11-22 - We All Fade Like a Leaf (IMG_0485)A lone maple leaf fades on a park bench in the Flat Fork Ridge Recreation Area. Caesar Creek State Park, Waynesville, Ohio.

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© Todd D. Nystrom and Todd the Hiker, 2013.

The Hills Before You Shall Break Forth Into Singing

Isaiah 55:10-12 – For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, 11 so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. 12 “For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.

2013-11-20 - The Hills Before You Shall Break Forth Into Singing (IMG_2886)Autumn colors along Auxier Ridge looking out to Courthouse Rock. Red River Gorge, Slade, Kentucky.

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© Todd D. Nystrom and Todd the Hiker, 2013.

Its Leaf Does Not Wither

Psalm 1:1-3 – Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; 2 but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. 3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.

2013-11-19 - Its Leaf Does Not Wither (IMG_5174)Without Christ in our life we are like these leaves withering in the stream! Caesar Creek Gorge State Nature Preserve, Oregonia, Ohio.

Read more about my “God is Revealed…“ category of posts

© Todd D. Nystrom and Todd the Hiker, 2013.