Category Archives: Enjoy Life

The Wonders of God – A Seaside View

“Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before Him with thanksgiving and extol Him with music and song. For the LORD is the great God, the great King above all gods…. The sea is His, for He made it, and His hands formed the dry land.” — Psalm 95:1-5
 

There’s something so appealing about the sea. I always get excited to see the beach and the waves and the line where the vast blue water meets the sunlit sky. And here I find myself–at the water’s edge. I breathe in the salty air and watch as the pelicans swoop across the water’s surface and hear the cries of the gulls as they pass overhead. The sand feels cool and comforting between my toes as the waves gently wash over my feet. As I look out to sea, I breathe deep and take it all in. And in that moment, I sense His presence.

Our GREAT and MIGHTY GOD.

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“Splendor and majesty are before Him; strength and glory are in His sanctuary.” — Psalm 96:6

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“Let the sea resound, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.” — Psalm 98:7

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“How many are Your works, O LORD! In wisdom You made them all; the earth is full of Your creatures. There is the sea, vast and spacious, teeming with creatures beyond number–living things both large and small.” — Psalm 104:24-25

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“And God said, ‘Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky.’ So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living and moving thing with which the water teems, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.” — Genesis 1:20-21

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“The LORD reigns, He is robed in majesty; the LORD is robed in majesty and is armed with strength. The world is firmly established; it cannot be moved. Your throne was established long ago; You are from all eternity. The seas have lifted up, O LORD, the seas have lifted up their voice; the seas have lifted up their pounding waves. Mightier than the thunder of the great waters, mightier than the breakers of the sea–the LORD on high is mighty.” — Psalm 93:1-4

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“Praise the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, You are very great; You are clothed with splendor and majesty. He wraps Himself in light as with a garment; He stretches out the heavens like a tent and lays the beams of His upper chambers on their waters. He makes the clouds His chariot and rides on the wings of the wind.” — Psalm 104:1-3

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“I will praise You, O LORD, among the nations; I will sing of you among the peoples. For great is Your love, higher than the heavens; Your faithfulness reaches to the skies. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens, and let Your glory be over all the earth.” — Psalm 108:4-5

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As I watch the setting sun, I feel the warmth of His love and this Scripture touches my heart…

“O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth! You have set Your glory above the heavens… When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that You are mindful of him?” — Psalm 8:1, 3-4

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“Praise the LORD. Praise, O servants of the LORD, praise the name of the LORD. Let the name of the LORD be praised, both now and forevermore. From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets, the name of the LORD is to be praised.” — Psalm 113:1-3

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“Great are the works of the LORD; they are pondered by all who delight in them. Glorious and majestic are His deeds, and His righteousness endures forever.” — Psalm 111:2-3

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“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display their knowledge. Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world.” — Psalm 19:1-4

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The next morning, looking out toward the sea, I suddenly notice the three trees. And my heart remembers Calvary and God’s amazing love!

“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” — John 3:16

The glorious wonders of God are all around us. So often I miss them in the sights I see every day. But getting away to the seaside–miles away from home–I remember to notice. To see God’s majesty in His creation. To read about them in His Word. And once back home, to be more aware of the beauty that surrounds my every moment and brings praise to the Lord.

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What beauty surrounds you? What amazing wonders are evident in the place you live? Do you have a special place that draws you deeper to sing of God’s glory and majesty through His creation?

O precious Lord, how great You are! Your creations shouts Your praise and declares Your majesty. Thank You, Father, for the blessing the world with such beauty. Thank You for revealing Your glory in Your creation. May we always sing Your praises and worship You, for You are the LORD God Almighty, maker of heaven and earth. You are our salvation–our very life. We offer to You our grateful hearts. In Jesus’ most precious name, Amen.

Grace and peace,
Sabra

 
All Scripture from New International Version of the Bible, 1984.
Images by Philip Penley and Sabra Penley.

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Filed under Creation, Enjoy Life, Glory, God's Presence, God's Works, Joy, Light, Love, Thankfulness

Don’t Wait Too Long

Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom. – Psalm 90:12

 

How could I have lost sight of it? That life can change in the blink of an eye. One moment all seems well. The next? Something breaks your heart and sends you reeling.

He was fine. Nothing out of the ordinary–his usual begging, whining, ploys for attention. How did we not notice?

He behaved a little strangely at first–laying in places and ways he never did before, his constant down and up, being away from where we were. But he suddenly plopped down, and I knew. Something was really wrong.

When I saw his almost lifeless body as my son picked him up and placed him in the car, I knew in my heart we would be coming home without him.

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He was just a dog…I know. But he was so much more to us. A faithful companion—a part of the family—for twelve years.

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As I tried to process what had suddenly happened, it struck me hard that we never took him walking on that trail we talked about. And now we never would. And as I looked through his photos, why were there so few of him with us? We had a lot of him alone, but where were the photos of our family with him? It was too late now.

Yes, in the blink of an eye, life can change forever. 

And when faced with that change, as we try to wrap our heads around what just happened, we think of things we wish we had done. Maybe things we had planned…maybe things we thought about doing…maybe a conversation we’d been putting off. But the reality sets in that we will never be able to do them now.

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Oh, how God is working to teach me this lesson! My Dad’s death, my husband’s life-changing illness, and now my sweet dog, Jerr-Bear. Somehow I keep forgetting.

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Psalm 90:12 says, “Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”

We never know how much time we have with the ones we love. So let’s determine to do those things that are important now and not put them off for another day. Another day may not come.

God’s Word tells us that there is a season for everything (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8). But we don’t know how long those seasons will last. That is for God alone to know. We must, therefore, strive to live each day to the fullest and always let others know how much we love them.

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So spend time together. Take those pictures. Have that conversation.

Don’t wait too long…do what’s important while there is still time. For we don’t know how many days we have.

Sovereign Lord, thank You for the time You give us with those we love. Help us to cherish every precious moment. Give us wisdom to do what’s important with them now, while they are still with us, for only You know what the future holds. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

 

Scripture from The Holy Bible, New International Version, 1984.
Images by Sabra Penley.

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Filed under Change, Enjoy Life, Expectation, God's Timing, Lessons, Love, Relationships

Simply. Fun. – Road Trip!

This post is about enjoying life. That's what Simply. Fun. posts
are all about. No careful writing. No great biblical insight. Just 
sharing the fun things in life.

“So I commend the enjoyment of life, because nothing is better for a man under the sun than to eat and drink and be glad. Then joy will accompany him in his work all the days of the life God has given him under the sun.” – Ecclesiastes 8:15

 

It’s been a whole year since we left town to go anywhere overnight. As we used to travel several times a year, my hubby was ready to go…anywhere! Our destination this time: San Antonio, to meet some sweet friends.

Road trips have always been enjoyable for us. We have special things we like to do along the way: listening to the radio, looking for photo ops and snapping a pic or two, planning ahead for the best place to eat, searching for some fudge, and timing our stops to include points of interest. And we’re always on the lookout for a Dairy Queen (as Blizzards are, regrettably, a favorite).

100_5731We love taking the back roads and seeing the sights, keeping an eye out for wildflowers and wildlife (which is pretty important or wildlife can turn into road kill pretty fast). And as I love taking photos, taking the road less traveled allows me to pull over, snap a few, and then quickly jump back in the car. That just can’t be done well on the interstate. So back roads were the way to go for this trip.

Transfer from 2007 Laptop 153Always in the past, David has been our driver and I’ve been the navigator. But now, because of my husband’s disability, he can’t drive. That leaves me to sit in the driver’s seat. I’ve driven plenty, but it isn’t my preferred spot in the car. I like riding shotgun. Being the sidekick. Taking a nap. I can’t take a nap when I drive, so now I drink lots of coffee. And then I have to stop more often. (Sorry…TMI.)

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Picture-taking is always on my mind when we travel. It isn’t as easy watching for the perfect shot when I’m watching the road. But, I did manage to find a few.

100_5748Why is it that when a there is a beautiful landscape just waiting to be photographed, there is absolutely no place along the highway to safely pull over and take a photo? I long for a stunning vista, the sunlight and shadow to fall just so, the animals to be near the fence or wildflowers that take your breath away. And then I see it—the perfect picture. Unfortunately, I’m doing 75 in a 75 and the shoulder is only 3 feet wide. Not one single drive or turn-off in sight. A then it’s gone. Like the proverbial big fish that got away.

100_5945And then there’s country music. Now, we may live in Texas, but we don’t usually listen to country music on the radio. We stay on the Christian music station most of the time. But when we’re out on the open road, we take whatever we can get. And in Texas, that’s country. Since we don’t listen to these songs much, it’s always interesting to listen to the lyrics. You can learn a lot from country songs. Like guys best not mess with country girls. They don’t take kindly to bein’ cheated on. Country boys apparently only drink two things: sweet tea and beer. And if they drink enough of the latter, all their troubles seem to disappear.

100_5955I have to say we were glad we made it to church Sunday morning to be fed some true theology. Otherwise, all we would have been fed was: “God is great. Beer is good. And people are crazy.”*

If we’re gone from home on Sunday we always make it a point to visit a church. This time we were blessed to hear Max Lucado speak in his home church during a wonderful worship service where they baptized…I don’t know…maybe 30-40 people? What a special day to visit!

Transfer from 2007 Laptop 145We stopped in Fredericksburg, a sweet little German heritage town, and walked around historic Main Street. Eclectic shops. Mild temperature. Sunshine. Soft breeze. Prime parking spot. Fudge. What’s not to love?

100_5944Dinner was a stop at a Dairy Queen for a delicious (if not so nutritious) Blizzard while sitting by the creek.

100_5951Two days of traveling the open road. And another item on the bucket list was checked off for the year.

100_5959Road trip.

A blessed weekend. Full of treasures. Full of friends. Full of joy. Full of love.

A precious gift indeed!

Have you been on a road trip lately? If not, do you have a bucket list for this year? Why don’t you tell us about it in the comments below?

Blessings to you,
Sabra

 

* Lyrics from "People Are Crazy" by Billy Currington.

Scripture from New International Version of the Bible, 1984.
All photos by Sabra Penley.

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Filed under Bucket List, Enjoy Life, Family Time, Fun, Joy