Resurrection Sunday – THE TRUTH

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 40 days. Christianity further teaches that after these indisputable “physical” appearances, Jesus Christ “physically” left this earth and promised to return “physically” some 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

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

Faith’s Becomes a Mother

1931032_36129957313_9434_n-impThe aroma of fresh coffee brewing and the sound of country music playing announced the new day before Faith even opened her eyes. Squinting against the brightness that burst through the kitchen window to the laundry, where she had slept the past week, she stretched out her front legs.

Ken came over with her breakfast bowl. ‘Hey, Girl. How’d you sleep? You were restless last night. Uncomfortable?’ He returned to the kitchen and poured a coffee.

Faith ate her breakfast hungrily without rising, lapped some water and rested her head on her paws. She woofed but it sounded more like a grunt.

‘I’ll be here all day; in fact I have a few weeks off. It’s going to get busy for all of us. Shield will be back later today. He’s at yet another training session.’ He paused to take a sip of his steamy brew. ‘I’ve missed you the past few months. Don’t get me wrong. Shield’s been a good help on patrols but he’s not my Faith.’

Turning awkwardly in a circle on the bed she settled back into the same position. If only I could get comfortable. I hope the doctor is right. This time tomorrow I’ll be quite a few kilos lighter. Well, except near feed times.

‘You know, I called him “Boof” at the end of last night’s shift.’ Ken chuckled when Faith lifted her head. ‘Yeah, I know. He’s OK and he’ll make a great dad. I’m just not sure he’ll ever be a great security dog.’

With her head resting again on her paws she closed her eyes. Maybe you’re right…on both accounts and yes, I think Boof suits him.

 

It was just after she had eaten a few nibbles of lunch when the first puppy arrived, quickly followed by six siblings.

‘Well done,’ Ken exclaimed while checking the last puppy for signs of stress. I’ve called Luke – your favourite vet. He’ll drop by on his way home from the clinic. I can’t believe you’re a mother of seven.’ He watched the puppies feed and noticed that she had eight nipples. ‘Well, at least there’s plenty to spare.’ He patted Faith before leaving her to nurse her family. A830DBAE-imp

Shield was delivered safely home shortly before the vet arrived. He danced around the kitchen just outside the laundry door until the knock on the door.

gggrrrr..

 ‘All right Shield’ Ken warned. ‘That’s enough.’ He grabbed his collar and led him out the glass sliding door that led to the rear verandah and closed it before Shield could push his way back in.

‘Ah,’ Luke sighed as he entered the kitchen. ‘The over-protective father. He’s a bit clumsy too if I recall correctly. You may have to be here when he’s around Faith and the pups.’

‘I will. No problems about that.’

Luke checked Faith first then each pup one at a time making sure they had good suction. ‘A nice litter you have here. Don’t forget I have first choice,’ he said with a grin and a wink. He stood to wash his hands in the laundry tub. ‘OK. That’s about it.’

‘When do you want to see them again?’

‘I’ll drop by in a few weeks to check when their eyes are open. Bring them into the clinic say in eight week after that for their vaccinations. Call me any time if Faith has any issues with her health or feeding.’

It was when Luke moved past the back door to head up the hallway that Shield barked and jumped at the glass.

‘That’s enough, Shield!’ Ken pointed and directed him to sit. ‘I’ll limit his visiting times or he’ll be stressing Faith out.’

‘It’s probably a good idea and if he get’s rough with them, you may have to ban him from any close contact.’ Luke paused before opening the front door. ‘You will need a bigger area for the pups anyway. Perhaps a divided area where Shield can oversee without you having to watch him every minute.‘

‘Sounds like a good idea. It will give me something to do while I’m off work. Thanks again for stopping by.’

Back in the kitchen Ken stood watching Faith and the pups to his left and then Shield licking the glass to his right. ‘Ah Boof, what an interesting few weeks we have ahead.’

© Chrissy Siggee – 2019

This is a work of fiction. Except for Ken and his dog Faith all other characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

Humility

Matthew 18:4 – Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

Humility speaks to me of meekness and being humble. I often think I’m not as humble as I ought, yet humility is a requirement of our faith.

I have seen the way the Lord works in the lives of those who show humility in what they do and say and, quite often, how they demonstrate their kindness to those around them. I see the rewards of their actions and the gentleness they demonstrate in their everyday lives. In whatever they do, their actions speak the humility they possess.

I’ve also witnessed the fall of the arrogant and proud.  Too many successful leaders fall because of pride. They allow success to be their ambition rather than Christ their goal.  They begin to believe in their own ability rather than Christ’s through them.

So how do we keep a balance?

Without Christ we are nothing and because we have Christ in our lives, we have worth and purpose. There is nothing wrong with feeling good about what Christ has done for us but we need to realize he doesn’t make us great.

Be willing to live the success that God has given us through humble acknowledgement of the source.

Father, show us how humility can speak through us by our actions. Help us to live humbly and to your purpose and keep from being proud and haughty, but demonstrate the true source of our abilities. Amen.

© Chrissy Siggee – 2019

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

Faith

Hebrews 11:1 tells us: Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Ephesians 3:16-19 says: That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.

Without faith, I’m nothing.  Faith is a part of me, the hope of my salvation, and all that I live for and all that I do. Life is not an easy road and it’s not a perfect one.

Life can be the pits – Life can be lonely – Life can be full of pain.

But, life without faith is no life at all.

When news spread that Jesus had risen from the grave, Thomas wanted to see Jesus before he would believe it. Faith believes in something before it’s seen. Not the other way around.

2 Corinthians 5:7 clearly says: For we walk by faith, not by sight

We all need Faith even just a little.

Matthew 17:20 – And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, if ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.

When I was confined to bed last year, I struggled with a lot of things, but faith in the Father, I never doubted. Days of pain drove me to tears and misery. Sometimes I couldn’t even pray for myself. I didn’t have to. I knew that the Great Physician would bring me through.

Simple? No. It was probably the worst year of my entire life.

My favourite Bible verses during those bleakest days and sleepless nights were from:

Matthew 9:21-22 – For she said within herself, if I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole. But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour.

Living by faith is a way of life – Life is living by faith – Faith is believing

Father, we sometimes feel in times of pain and loneliness that our faith is weak. Teach us, help us, to keep believing even when we don’t see answers. Show us how to walk by faith and not by sight. Amen.

© Chrissy Siggee

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

Faith’s Discovery

1931032_36129957313_9434_n-impAsh threatened to gag her with each breath she took but Faith continued to sniff the charred ground around her. The smell of burnt flesh occasionally assaulted her nostrils and smouldering debris quickened her steps. Small puffs of smoke drifted upward here and there. It was a dismal aftermath.

‘Mind your paws, Faith,’ Ken’s voiced in a raspy whisper.  He cleared his throat before continuing. ‘I don’t think there’s anything out here but death,’ he added and knelt on one knee beside the burnt carcass of a small wallaby.

Faith nuzzled Ken’s elbow. He lifted his arm and drew her near. There’s always life after a fire. We just have to keep looking. With her head held low she continued her search.

Ken’s radio crackled to life. ‘Hey you guys. Did you find anything?’

‘Not yet, Chief. Mandy and Steve are searching along the creek then up to Wattle Road. Faith and I are moving in the same direct along the top of the ridge. Hopefully, we can cover more ground this way without walking right past any life. The air is still thick in places. Oh, and there’s been a few spot fires we had to extinguish too. I’ll check in when we meet up with the other two.’

‘OK, Ken. I know it’s not the best job but someone has to do it. Later.’

‘Come on, Faith. Let’s get moving.’

Faith thought about the conversation Ken had with his fire fighter friend Joe earlier today. Poor Joe. He found that old man in that burnt-out shed this morning. Not much left of him. Faith shuddered. Counselling, Chief had told him. I think I would need it too. A high-pitched whistle broke into her dismal thoughts.

Looking around, Ken whistled back. Faith’s ears pricked up and shifted back and forth. The whistle came again and they both turned toward the sound in a hurried walk.

‘What’s up,’ Ken shouted as they approached two figures slumped over a mound on the ash covered ground.

‘Looks like a backpack but there’s no one around here,’ Steve said. ‘At least not in the ten-metre circle we’ve searched.’

‘It could have been here for months,’ Mandy added poking at the pack with her fire fighter’s axe. ‘We can take it back for further investigation.’

The guys nodded in agreement and continue toward the road that was just within their hazy vision. Faith led the way with her head close to the ground. No one spoke until they stopped in the middle of the deserted street. They all walked slowly in a small circle just staring. Three burnt-out cars smouldered on the side of the road. They appeared to have been heading north out of harm’s way. Ken approached the closest vehicle and peered inside before moving to the other two. Faith stayed by his side.

‘Well, at least the occupants seemed to have escaped,’ Ken said to no one in particular. He removed his hat and wiped his sweating brow with the sleeve of his filthy jacket.

‘This has been a day of deaths and sadness,’ Steve said quietly. ‘Down right depressing it is.’

Steve and Mandy dowsed what flames they could. Dark puffs of dark clouds formed and died above the cars.

Faith began to walk in circles sniffing the ground.

Ken crouched on the warped bitumen.  ‘What is it, Girl?’

She barked and headed up the road with Mandy, Steve and Ken following close behind.

Most of the houses on both sides of the road were burnt out; some still burning.

‘Anyone here?’ Ken shouted.

‘Hello’, Mandy and Steve called in unison.

Faith barked.

Silence. Except for the crackling of nearby flames and the shifting of rubble, it was eerily quiet.

‘We’ll split up. Faith and I will check out these two houses. Mandy, Steve, take those two,’ Ken pointed across the road opposite the burnt-out cars. ‘Don’t go in unless you see someone…but call for us first.’ He removed Faith’s lead. ‘I’ll call for you if we find anything.’

Steve nodded. ‘All right. Be careful, Ken.’

Faith looked up from the steps she had been sniffing to see Ken jog through the charred remains of the front gate. Nothing here….or is there?  With ears twitching back and forth she listened.

‘Hear anything.’ He stood beside her and waited.

She wagged her tail and proceeded to circle the entire house before returning to Ken and looked up. Nothing. Let’s go. She bolted through the side fence while Ken took the long way around.

The second house revealed nothing as well. They returned to find Mandy and Steve putting out spot fires near an outdoor BBQ and gas bottle. ‘Nothing?’ Ken asked.

‘Nope,’ Steve sighed.

Faith’s ears snapped to attention. There it is again. Something…

‘Faith?’

She looked over her shoulder at Ken and woofed.

The three followed her around to the rear of the house to what appeared to be a workshop or garden shed. As they neared the opened door they heard a faint cry. Faith was nudging a shelf that had collapsed.

‘Let’s see what we have here,’ Ken said quietly. Faith moved out of his way and sat beside Mandy who patted her gently.

‘Oh my. How did you get stuck in there? Steve, give me your rake.’

Steve obliged and placed his fireman’s rescue rake into Ken’s hand.

A few minutes later Ken stood up with something in his hand.

‘A flower pot?’ Mandy gasped.

Ken turned the pot around to reveal a little bundle of fur. A kitten, to be exact.

Faith whimpered and Ken placed the kitten, still in the pot, under Faith’s nose.

 She  gently licked the ball of fluff. Hi cutie. I’m sure glad Shield is spending the day in training. He’d eat you alive.

‘Smart dog,’ Steve finally reacted and moved outside with the others close behind.

The three fire fighters laughed. Faith barked. The Kitten meowed. Their depressing mood had suddenly been lifted. Mandy took out her water bottle and removed her glove. The kitten lapped from her opened hand.

Just above the commotion the chief’s voice was heard. ‘Hey, what’s happening out there? We haven’t heard anything for some time. What’s happening, Ken?’

Ken handed the kitten over to a jubilant Mandy. ‘We’re fine Chief,’ he yelled. ‘You won’t believe this.’

The cheering rose and Faith jumped up and down barking excitedly.

‘Ken?’

‘Everything’s OK, Chief. We found a kitten. He’s alive!’ Again, cheers went up.

The chief responded with a chuckle. ‘I’m glad for you guys. It’s been a depressing day. Oh, and another search and rescue team found a backpacker. He’s all right. He was dazed and wondering around. Says he lost his backpack in the fire somewhere by the river.’ He paused. ‘Return to headquarters. I think you all need a break.’

‘See you soon, Chief. We’re bringing in the kitten. Mandy’s already named it.’ He laughed. ‘Lucky, I think. We also have the backpack. Hope that makes the owner’s day. Over and out.’

Faith bounded over to Ken at his call. Let’s go home.

 © Chrissy Siggee – 2019

This is a work of fiction. Except for Ken and his dog Faith all other characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

Tuesday Reblog: My Faith — Roth Poetry

Please choose to read the original post and leave your likes and comments with
My Faith — Roth Poetry

Faith is the floodplain of Grace Where I plant my roots to grow Giving me the strength I need To find meaning and purpose in life Faith is the floodplain of Grace Where conscience and moral values Are cultivated throughout my lifetime; Bringing meaning and purpose to life Faith brings meaning and purpose to life […]

via My Faith — Roth Poetry