CAROLYN'S COMPOSITIONS

December 18, 2014

The 8 Maids-a-milking & the 8 Beatitudes

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

THE EIGHT MAIDS-A-MILKING

AND

THE EIGHT BEATITUDES

We’re too blessed to be stressed…even in a holiday season.

Eight maids-a-milking…the eighth gift in the song the Twelve Days of Christmas…is the theme of the Monte and Carolyn Holland 2014 Christmas ornament (each year our Christmas card is a hand-made ornament). NOTE: Each illustration uses one of my seven sisters, plus myself, our heads superimposed on pictures of maids-a-milking.

Nancy Lee, Sister 1

Nancy Lee, Sister 1

The eight maids a-milking addresses two of the major themes of fifteenth and sixteenth century English celebrations and parties during the Christmas holidays – food and romance.

Typically, the work of milking cows (and goats) was a woman’s job. Although milk was not a common beverage during this pre-refrigeration time (it spoiled too quickly), milk based products did not spoil so rapidly. Cheese, sour milk, and custards—which were prized treats for celebrations.

And the word maid? It’s a shortened form of (more…)

March 19, 2010

A Daily Online Lenten Study Guide: Day 28

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

A DAILY ONLINE LENTEN STUDY GUIDE: DAY 28

Monte Holland

This is the twenty-eighth in a series of daily Lenten devotionals called “Scriptural Lessons Leading to a Godly and Moral Life.” To start the study, click on: A Daily Online Lenten Study Guide: Introduction or

https://carolyncholland.wordpress.com/2010/02/16/a-daily-online-lenten-study-guide-introduction/

 To view yesterday’s A DAILY ON-LINE LENTEN STUDY GUIDE click on: A Daily Online Lenten Study Guide: Day 27

Today’s photographs feature the cross on the very top of Wallberg Mountain in Germany (the white one with the Alps in the distance). The second cross is on a side slope of the same mountain. To view click on: http://ligonierliving.blogspot.com/2010/03/daily-online-lenten-study-guide-day-28.html

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Beatitudes – Matthew 5:1-12

 1 And seeing the multitudes, he went up into the mountain: and when he had sat down, his disciples came unto him:

 2 and he opened his mouth and taught them, saying,

 3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

 4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.

 5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

 6 Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

 7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.

 8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

 9 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called sons of God.

 10 Blessed are they that have been persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

 11 Blessed are ye when men shall reproach you, and persecute you, and say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.

 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets that were before you. American Standard Version (ASV)

Today we look at verses 3 and 4: the poor in spirit and those who mourn

 3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

 4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.

The Contemporary English Version (CEV) of these verses is:

3 God blesses those people who depend on him. They belong to the kingdom of heaven. (or the kingdom of heaven belongs to them.)

4 God blesses those people who grieve. They will find comfort.

     The following verses are referenced in The Learning Bible (CEV) as related to the above two verses:

 Isaiah 61:2   This is the year when the Lord God will show kindness to us and punish our enemies.

  Psalm 37:11  the poor will take the land and enjoy the harvest.

  Isaiah 55:1,2  If you are thirsty, come and drink water! If you don’t have any money, come, eat what you want! Drink wine and milk without paying a cent. Why waste your money on what really isn’t food? Why work hard for something that doesn’t satisfy? Listen carefully to me, and you will enjoy the very best foods.

     The poor in spirit, or those who depend on God, will be blessed with the kingdom of heaven. Does that mean now, later, or at all times? Our faith teaches that those who put their faith in God have a future, an eternal future, with God. Jesus said in John 14 that He was going to prepare a place for us with God the Father.

     What about the present? Is the Kingdom of Heaven already available to those who are poor in spirit or belong to God?

     I believe (more…)

March 18, 2010

A Daily Online Lenten Study Guide: Day 27

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

A DAILY ONLINE LENTEN STUDY GUIDE: DAY 27

Monte Holland

This is the thirteenth in a series of daily Lenten devotionals called “Scriptural Lessons Leading to a Godly and Moral Life.” To start the study, click on: A Daily Online Lenten Study Guide: Introduction or

https://carolyncholland.wordpress.com/2010/02/16/a-daily-online-lenten-study-guide-introduction/

To view yesterday’s A DAILY ON-LINE LENTEN STUDY GUIDE click on: A Daily Online Lenten Study Guide: Day 26

Today’s photographs feature the Shaker Meeting House in Sabbathday Lake, Maine. To view click on: http://ligonierliving.blogspot.com/2010/03/pictures-of-sabbathday-lake-shaker.html

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     For the next seven days we will look at the beginning portion of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. This section is called the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:1-12).

     Today we pause before beginning to look at the Beatitudes one-by-one tomorrow.

     It’s appropriate to spend time reviewing how we live our lives. Sometimes we need to stop to take stock of what is important in life, and the implications of being and doing what is important. The daily discipline of Bible reading, the use of a devotional guide (e.g. Devozine, a devotional for youth, is available at www.upperroom.org/devozine/2010/marapr/default.asp?week=current as well as a number of devotional magazines for adults), and prayer, help keep us on the track of living the Godly, moral life.

     Another aid to keeping on track of living the Godly, moral life is the telling and listening to quality stories. Below is a story that I heard via the Internet—a common way stories are shared in today’s culture. It’s about the challenge of being faithful to the Godly, moral life every moment, and the results of doing so:

A Christian

     Several years ago, a preacher from out-of-state accepted a call to a church in Houston, Texas. Some weeks after he arrived, he had an occasion to ride the bus from his home to the downtown area. When he sat down, he discovered that the driver had accidentally given him a quarter too much change. As he considered what to do, he thought to himself: ‘You’d better give the quarter back. It would be wrong to keep it.’ Then he thought, ‘Oh, forget it, it’s only a quarter. Who would worry about this little amount? Anyway, the bus company gets too much fare; they will never miss it. Accept it as a ‘gift from God’ and keep quiet.’ 
     When his stop came, he paused momentarily at the door before handing the quarter to the driver and saying: ‘Here, you gave me too much change ‘
      The driver, with a smile, replied, ‘Aren’t you the new preacher in town?’
      ‘Yes’ he replied.
      ‘Well, I have been thinking a lot lately about going somewhere to worship. I just wanted to see what you would do if I gave you too much change. I’ll see you at church on Sunday.’
      When the preacher stepped off of the bus, he literally grabbed the nearest light pole, held on, and said, ‘Oh God, I almost sold your Son for a quarter.’
      Our lives are the only Bible some people will ever read. This is a really scary example of how much people watch us as Christians, and will put us to the test! Always be on guard — and remember — You carry the name of Christ on your shoulders when you call yourself  ‘Christian.’
     Watch your thoughts; they become words.
     Watch your words; they become actions.
     Watch your actions; they become habits.
     Watch your habits; they become character.
 

     Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.

(shared with us by our friend Peg)

EXERCISES:

Exercise 1: Do you hear stories having a (more…)

March 26, 2009

Basic Biblical Teachings for the Godly and Moral Life: 5 The Beatitudes

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

BASIC BIBLICAL TEACHINGS FOR THE

GODLY AND MORAL LIFE: 5

Guest writer Monte W. Holland

For some time, my husband, Monte, has been concerned about today’s young generation and the ethical behavior, which they are exposed to in today’s society. He sees the inconsistencies in what they experience in society and what is taught by Biblical Scripture, where lessons on “The Godly, Moral Life,” are presented.
As a step in counteracting society’s UnGodly, Immoral life lessons, he developed a series of six lessons, one for each week in Lent, beginning today, Ash Wednesday. Each lesson is divided into seven daily sections. Below is an introduction for the first week, and a link to its entire writings, hosted by the Open Hands Ministry site. Open Hands is a ministry of the United Methodist Churches in the Ligonier, PA, area, which provides layettes for WIC babies in Westmoreland County, and operates second-hand clothing and furnishings stores in Stahlstown and Jeannette.
Click on the same link  
http://www.methodists-care.org/  for a Children and Youth version of this Lenten Study. Earlier segments of this study are also linked there.
AN ON-LINE STUDY GUIDE FOR THE LENTEN SEASON– “Basic Biblical Teachings for the Godly and Moral Life”
LESSON 5  Wednesday March 25 –  Tuesday April 1, 2009
This week we look at the beginning portion of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, a section (more…)

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