Absorbed in Wonder

Raindrops trickle from velvet soft roses by the gate—
Ladybugs struggle to keep a grip on moistened leaves—
Butterflies flutter their feather-light wings
And mottled stalks assent to the rising breeze.

Beyond the path that leads to the meadow,
Sparrows take flight from their nesting trees—
Creating rain-soaked leaves to glisten like shattered mirrors
And sun rays capture the essence of the after rain.

Honeysuckle saturates the air with its perfume
Mingling with the simple freshness of dampened earth,
That fills the air with splendour and His goodness
And penetrates the senses with pure simplicity.

Robins sing their chorus to the retreating storm—
Fleeting clouds drift across the distant sky,
While trailing shadows chase the thinning haze
And disappear into carefree sunbeams along the rise.

Unfurling colours spread as ribbons above the trees—
Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet
Etching an archway across the clearing heavens
And embracing the distant hills with the perfect kiss.

I close my eyes to soak up the enchanting beauty—
Tranquil moments fill my thirsty soul,
His blessed peace flows through my inner being
And imprints the perfect scene within my mind.

© Chrissy Siggee
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
From my book:  Glimpses of His Glory

Archived in: 🦋 Christian Reads

Trials

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.  Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4 (NIV)

How should we view the trials that we go through?  First, we should reflect on the reasons why we are facing them. Unfortunately, for most of us, our questioning comes from our human form of questioning of the— ‘why me?’ aspect.  This is of course is just questioning God. Often this type of thinking easily moves into anger. This is the exact opposite of how we are directed to respond.

We are told to “consider it pure joy.” Now that’s seems a strange statement. If someone were to teach me to do that when facing trials, I would be tempted to call him an idiot. This would of course reveal only an immaturity and the unbiblical nature of my biblical and spiritual thinking.

We should view our trials with joyfulness, knowing what is really happening. That is, when we are being tried, our faith is being tested. What does that mean? When we face a challenge, do we respond by what we see and feel—or by what we believe to be true? If we are being tested it should increase our stability, our steadfastness and our faith.

Father, help me to count all thing as pure joy, whatever we face today. Give me the faith that is unwavering in all trials and let me found tested and true. Amen.

© Chrissy Siggee  2019

Scripture Verses used are from the New International Version of the Bible

Archived in: 🦋 Christian Reads

Faith’s Adventures – re-posted all Together.

From the Archives:  Faith’s Adventure – All 8 Stories

Faith to the Rescue
Faith Loses a Friend
Faith Goes on a Holiday
Faith’s Christmas Surprise
Faith’s Close Encounter
Faith’s Discovery
Faith Becomes a Mother
Faith – That’s my Blue Eye
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Partly true, partly fictional. 8 very short stories about Ken and his dog faith. Suitable for all ages. Please note: story “Faith Loses a Friend” may need parental guidance for younger children.

Archived in: Short Fiction

Fairy Take-Over

My dear neighbour and friend across the road kindly let me have her fairies, toadstools and gnomes that have been out grown by the grandchildren. “The Pond” has been overwhelmed by more fairies, little gnomes and fairy houses. One fairy has now become the centre piece of the birdbath which has inspired me to set aside a quiet day to sit and imagine before placing everything in different places. We have a young blue tongue lizard that roams my garden, and the neighbours, that bumps the poor little fairies into the pond. Some might say I’m a little crazy with my gnomes garden out the front, and now The Fairy Pond, but no one has yet disliked it. I think if I ever do get dementia, I’ll be happy in my garden. 🙂

Archived in: 🦋 I’m in the Garden

This Soul of Mine, It’s not my Own.

One day I gave my life to Jesus,
I was only six years old you know—
My soul I knew, was not my own.

To church we went but once a week,
It was like that every Sunday—
My soul went with me, like always.

The church we went to was so big,
All the people and the noise they made,
Within my soul, I was afraid.

I didn’t know the preacher that day,
He talked about lilies and sparrow birds—
My soul was alert, to these words.

My soul is worth far more than these,
Jesus died for me; why that’s absurd!
What is this, my soul has heard?

Then finally some words I understood,
This man was talking right to me—
Yes, into my soul, he could see.

I heard the choir sing “Just as I am,”
They sang those words so bold—
And to my soul, they were like gold.

Wake up my child, this is for you,
A family ticket I cannot give—
For this your soul, it needs to live.’

An altar call the preacher made,
What will you do with Jesus today?
As for my soul and I, we did obey.

I walked on by my mum and dad,
My brothers and my sister too;
I think my soul it knew, just what to do.

I prayed a prayer I won’t forget,
I have remembered it to this day—
My life and soul, to God I gave.

Now one day I will live with Him,
And no matter how long I will be known—
This soul of mine, it’s not my own.

© Chrissy Siggee

Archived in:   🦋 Christian Reads

Hope

Psalm 31:24 – Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the LORD.

Colossians 1:5 – For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel; which has come to you.

Do you ever feel like giving up? Do your circumstances weigh you down? Being a Christian doesn’t mean life is going to be easy. Nor does it mean that nothing will go wrong. We all live in the same world as we did before our salvation, but now we have an overcomer, and a hope for better things to come.

To live in hope gives new meaning to all situations, and believing is the key to hope. Nothing is impossible with God. Nothing is too big. Even in your darkest hour, don’t give up hope. God is bigger than any of your struggles and he watches over you every moment of your lives. He will never leave you and will bring you into that place of restoration and healing. Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and hang on to the hope you can have in him.

Father, teach me to trust you in every circumstance that threatens to engulf me. Help me to believe in a better tomorrow and the hope that you have to offer. Show me how to be strong in your Word and live in hope through the promises you have given to me. All of my ambitions hope and dreams, I give to you. Amen

 © Chrissy Siggee 2012

Scripture Verses used are from the King James Version of the Bible

Archived in: 🦋 Christian Reads

Nowhere

To the cross You went to die for me,
For every sin, You carried them all;
The heaviness and shame You paid the fee—
Father, forgive them, You did call.

– Nowhere will I find a friend so true.

At the cross I laid my burdens down,
For all the wrongs You heard my plea;
The trauma and burden weighed You down—
You shed Your blood for all to see.

 – Nowhere will I find a friend so real.

On the cross You took my faults,
For each and every guilt and pain;
The sadness and despair came with assaults—
This bitterness of sin, full of strain.

– Nowhere will I find a friend who loved.

From the cross you paid for it all,
For my life alone I know You would give;
The man of sorrows, a death cruel and brutal—
Your life you gave so I could live.

– Nowhere will I find a friend like You.

© Chrissy Siggee

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

From my book: Glimpses of His Glory

Archived in: 🦋 Christian Reads

Two Days in Port Stephens – oops. Take 2.

It’s been two days since we returned from a two day break in beautiful Port Stephens. The weather was nice with just a few showers over night. This is where we stayed. This photo is a photo of an advertising photo taken from the other side of the golf course. The apartment we stayed in was on the first floor facing the golf course in the building centre right of the photo – one of the taller buildings with the triangle frame at the top.

Neither of us play golf. It’s the tranquility of the place that lures us there.

On the first morning we took a ten minute drive to Nelson Bay where we enjoyed a quiet coffee while we waited for the ferry to take us to a little riverside town named Tea Gardens.

It’s near quietness was due to it being a day before Easter and the school holidays had not yet begun.

The ferry was pretty old but it added to the glamour of the trip. There was only half the passenger capacity so social distancing wasn’t a problem and the captain, and one crew man, were very informative.

Photo by Norm

With the swells being quite high through the heads, it was not easy trying to stand let alone holding a camera and taking photographs. These are just a few photos taken on the way to Tea Gardens.

After some window shopping, we wandered around to read the lunch menus on various cafe and restaurant windows. We settled on the Seagrass Cafe with gluten free options. I ate just over half of my meal. Norm ate all of his and almost the rest of mine.

The Singing Bridge was named after the hand-railed pedestrian fence had been installed. Apparently when the wind blows, from a certain direction at around 80 kilometres an hour, a very loud whining can be heard up and down the river until the wind lessens and changes direction. On the first occurrence, those who heard it were quite frightened by it. We didn’t get to hear it though.

The outing took just over three and a half hours with our return ferry ride being escorted at one time by a lone dolphin. We did see a few dolphins leaping out of the water some distance away on the trip out too.

Photo by Chrissy

Most of the time away was just to relax and watch the day go by. Returning home on Good Friday would have been OK except for road works that backed up traffic. We discovered just over this hill, two lanes suddenly became one. This photo was taken when the traffic came to a dead stop. We then proceeded at a speed of 2-4 km an hour for the next 5kms. As soon as we past the roadworks, the traffic disappeared.

Archived in: 🦋 Retirement

Resurrection

1 Corinthians 15:14-22 “And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men.  But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.” (NIV)

Christians worldwide celebrate the resurrection of their Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, on Easter Sunday. Christianity teaches that the author and creator of the faith is alive today. No other religion of the world makes such an amazing claim. Other religions may claim that the “spirit” of their founder lives in his religious teachings, but Christians declare that Jesus Christ lives today — bodily.

True biblical Christianity teaches that Jesus really died AND really rose from the dead – physically. Jesus rose bodily as well as spiritually from the grave. He then appeared alive to a variety of people on many different times over a period of forty days. Christianity further teaches that after these indisputable “physical” appearances, Jesus Christ “physically” left this earth and promised to return “physically” one day.

John 14:1-3 says, “Let not your heart be troubled. Ye believe in God; believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you unto Myself, that where I am, there ye may be also.”

Acts 1:9-12 describes what the disciples saw on the Mount of Olives: “After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight. They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. Men of Galilee,’ they said, ‘why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.’ Then they returned to Jerusalem from the hill called the Mount of Olives, a Sabbath day’s walk from the city.” (NIV)

If there was no foundation for the Christian faith, if Jesus Christ did not die on the cross, if He didn’t rise from the dead, then the whole basis of the Christian faith would be — empty.

Christian faith holds that Jesus was resurrected from the dead bodily, ascended into heaven bodily, lives today in glory in a body, and will someday return to this earth bodily.

1 Corinthians 15:3-8 “For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.”

Father, thank you for dying on the cross for us that we may be saved from eternal death. We praise you this Resurrection day for the faith of the Christian church and the hope of your return. Amen

© Chrissy Siggee 2011

Scripture Verses used are from the New International Version of the Bible

Archived in: 🦋 Christian Reads

My God, My God, Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me?

Both Matthew and Mark recorded these words cried out by Jesus on the cross. These same words occur interestingly enough in the opening verse of the Twenty Second Psalm. Yet neither Matthew nor Mark referred to them as a fulfilment of prophecy and after six hours of agony in body and soul on the cross, this cry escapes from our Saviours lips.

There were not many words spoken by Jesus while he was on the cross. The words He did say are recorded specifically.

His first words were “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do”—-a prayer for pardon.

His second proclamation made was a promise of peace.

“Today you shall be with me in Paradise’

His third decree was one of kindness to and for his mother.

“Woman behold thy son….Son behold thy mother.” 

When the darkness had fallen, three last announcements where uttered. They followed in rapid succession.

“I thirst”

“It is finished

“Father into thy hands I commend my spirit”

Then, there was this cry of sorrow.

“My God, my God, why Hast Thou Forsaken Me?

There is something of extraordinary power and feeling in these words of Jesus on the Cross. This is obvious from the fact that both Matthew and Mark have diligently given the words in the language our Lord used.

Eli Eli, lama Sa-bach-thani”

Nowhere else in Scripture do we find recurrence of these words except in the Twenty Second Psalm. When Jesus cried these words, he was expressing suffering that was never at any other time felt in this world and I believe, never will again.

To the historian, to the poet or to the theologian, the description and the language of these words in Psalms 22 might suggest it could have been either history or prophecy.  However, the context of Psalm 22 is not clear either way.

Matthew and Mark may not have recognised the connection.  However, Jesus, a learned scholar of the Scriptures from a very young age, would have known the Psalms well.  He said many times through out His ministry “it is written”.

To the believer, nevertheless, this cry is a revelation of the deep suffering and anguishes our Saviour bore, and a proof of His infinite love for sinners.

It challenges us, with all the saints, to be strong to understand what is:

“..the length and breadth and height and depth of the love of God”…

Ephesians 3 verses 18 & 19 KJV

If the cross is the fundamental Truth of the New Testament, this cry is the heart of this truth and its inmost expression.  This is the Holy of Holys to the reverent reader of the story of the passion.

© Chrissy Siggee

Archived in: 🦋 Christian Reads

THEY CRUCIFIED MY LORD! – The Poem

Beaten and humiliated,
they led my Lord away
to the mount of death—
He was nailed and hung
on a wooden cross—
Naked and shamed
like a common thief.

They mocked
They cursed
They laughed

Bleeding head hung low,
nails ripped hands and feet
A body slashed and torn—
Blood flowed down
onto the rugged ground—
Pain and dread
painted on His face.

Shame
Sorrow
Shunned

Blamed and disgraced,
all purity discredited
Guilt and sin He bore—
My beautiful Jesus,
You did this for me—
You bled and died
So I could live.

They seized His clothes
They pierced His side
They crucified my Lord!

© Chrissy Siggee

Archived in: 🦋 Christian Reads

They Parted His Garments

And when they had crucified him, they parted his garments, casting lots upon them, what every man should take. Mark 15:24

This stripping of Jesus was so appalling that it was referred to in all four Gospels.

Matthew, who observed that this occurrence was a fulfilment of Psalm 22:18 “They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.”

Mark, who himself fled naked from the mob in the garden.

Luke 23:34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

John also refers to the Psalm, as Matthew did, but also gives the most detail and accurate description of the whole agony of the crucifixion.

The Christ lived in purity and dignity of manhood. Almost all pictures of the crucifixion give us the view of a dignified Jesus. But one gospel records the scene — “They stripped Him,” John said. Naked He came from His mother’s womb, and naked He hangs from a tree.

Adam experienced the shame of nakedness in Eden because of his transgression. So too, the Son of God took our sinful flesh and the shame of our nakedness upon Himself.

I believe there were two elements to the crucifixion; one of the physical and the other of the mental suffering. Jesus was despised and rejected, even by His own friends. He was oppressed by sinners, held in contempt by the soldiers, cursed by men and stripped of His garments.

His garments. His seamless robe. A garment fit for a king. His clothing wouldn’t have been a beggar’s rags.

But when I read Psalm 93:1 “The LORD reigneth, he is clothed with majesty; the LORD is clothed with strength, wherewith he hath girded himself: the world also is established, that it cannot be moved.” It puts a put a whole new perspective and horror to the story. They parted His garments and cast lots…

© Chrissy Siggee

Scripture Verses used are from the King James Version of the Bible

Archived in: 🦋 Christian Reads

THEY CRUCIFIED MY LORD – The Devotion

Mark 15:25-28 “And it was the third hour, and they crucified him. And the superscription of his accusation was written over, THE KING OF THE JEWS. And with him they crucify two thieves; the one on his right hand, and the other on his left. And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith, and he was numbered with the transgressors.”

We have read about the cruelty of inhuman treatment of Jesus by the soldiers, servants and the people, who assembled to witness his beating. Much can be said again about the unwarranted punishment our Lord received prior to His crucifixion. We have also read and heard repeatedly of the death of Christ. Many of us have seen the “Passion of the Christ” movie. Without playing down the significance of the crucifixion itself in any way, let’s move on to the mysteries of His death.

The message of the cross is indeed a mystery. The message can be learned through the Scriptures, movies and witnessing. Prophecies and teaching were recorded throughout the Old Testament; including the Psalms.

“I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ; That in everything ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge; Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you: So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” 1 Corinthians 1:4-10

Yet…it’s not only that we see in the death of Jesus the highest demonstration of God’s love, but also of His infinite sorrow and compassion. “But as far as the east is from the west, so shall he remove our sin”. (paraphrased) Not even an earthly father can pay the penalty of his child’s transgression, nor can any man pay the price of sin of another.

When Paul speaks of the suffering of Jesus on the cross, he deals with facts so awe-inspiring that he calls them: “the depths of God”. (1 Corinthians 2:10) These mysteries are so deep that they are unfathomable of all human thinking – even more unfathomable as the deepest, unreachable, bottomless ocean. This act of love is beyond measure. But, by His Holy Spirit, God reveals it to even the youngest of children, the simplest minded, and the uneducated. His love for us is infinite. Although we cannot understand these mysteries, we thank Him with absolute gratefulness and humility.

My hope, my strength, my redeemer, my God, my King and my all…they crucified my Lord.

© Chrissy Siggee

Archived in: 🦋 Christian Reads