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Father's Day - the unherald day

      Today is Father's Day, and it too is an unheralded day.  For example, $14 billion is spent on Mother's Day,  After Christmas, it is the largest gift giving holiday in America.  Almost two billion dollars is spent on flowers (25% of all flowers are given on this day), and 141 million cards are sent.  Contrast this to Father's Day where 70% of Americans won't buy their fathers a gift.  And far fewer cards will be sent to fathers.  Of note, over 3/4s of the respondents said it was difficult to very difficult being a father.  (See http://www.aventuramagazine.com/pagedetails.php?idpage=466).
    The challenge with being a father is to lead the family - above all being present.  Absentee fathers are a plague in today's society.  On Thursday I was talking with a co-worker who works as a Big Sister.  The family with whom she works is a single mom with two daughters.  The father is in Texas, where he has fathered another four children.  What type of father is he when he is missing from his family?
    So fathers, rejoice in being a father.  Lead by example.  Love God.  Love your wife.  Love your children.  And be present.  Be at home for them.  Turn off the TV and listen to what they have to say.  Play a game with them.  Talk to them.  

Daylilies and God's Love

     I have been enjoying the beauty of the daylilies.  Years ago when we first moved to Wayne, NJ in 1968, my father and I dug up three daylilies from the woods near our house and planted them by the side of the driveway.  Now there will be hundreds of blooms in one day.  When I was home several years ago, I dug up some of the daylilies in Wayne and planted them in bad soil in Norfolk.  Yet they thrived and blossomed, and now I am getting 15-20 daylilies at the height of the season.
    I love their beauty.  They are so exquisite, so finely created.  And what is more amazing is that they last for only one day.  The next day I pull off the old bloom, and another blossoms in its place.
    Jesus Christ said:  "And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin.  Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.  If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?"  Matthew 6:28-30
    So rejoice that the God who made the day-lilies, also loves and cares for you!

Ascension Day - the Forgotten Christian Holy Day

     This past Thursday our church celebrated Ascension Day, which is 40 days after the Resurrection of Christ on Easter Sunday, and ten days before Pentecost Sunday.  Ascension Day is celebrated by the Roman Catholics and by the Reformed churches, but very few other Christians celebrate Christ's triumphal return to heaven.  While Google will tell us that today (05 June) is Richard Scarry's 92nd birthday, there was nothing on Ascension Day, despite being such an important day.  But that is okay.  Because at least it is not a commercialized holiday.  Only Christians celebrate it.
     Our pastor preached a very interesting sermon.  Ascension Day celebrates Christ's reign now.  Daniel 7:13-14 proclaims this:  “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a Son of Man [i.e., Jesus Christ], coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days [i.e., God the Father] and was led into His presence. [Glenn's note:  I always misinterpreted Ascension Day's clouds of heaven as clouds that Christ went into.  But they are really  clouds that Christ approaches the Father.]  He [i.e., Jesus Christ] was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all nations and peoples of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed."  Then, at the Second Coming of Christ, at the end of the world, Christ will hand the kingdom over to the Father.  This is based on I Corinthians 15:24 - "Then the end will come, when He hands the over the kingdom to the Father after He has destroyed all dominion, authority, and power."
     Our benefit is that because Christ is king now, we share in His blessings.  Thus, we read in John 16:15 "All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you."  So we celebrate Christ who reigns now!!