My sister, Muriel Hall, has given permission to share what she wrote about Summer Grasses. She is being tested for, and probably has, ALS – Lou Gehrig's Disease.
This touches my heart. I feel like that is where I am in life just now. My full bloom is past and yet I want to stand tall in the midst of the snow and cold, not ready to stop surviving. I know my season is almost past but I want to be assured that the roots I have planted will sprout forth with even more beauty and vigor in the next generation.
I just love the picture, where was it taken?
Thank you for sending this to start the new year. It is a special gift.
To answer Muriel's question, the picture was taken at the entrance drive going to The Inn At Chappel Creek, Vermilion, Ohio, where I live. This is an assisted living facility under the auspices of Christian & Missionary Alliance. I have been here nearly two years. For many years I have had MS – multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, and other assorted problems including retinal detachment which left me with permanent double vision after eye surgery. Weakness and pain gradually are taking a toll. I pray that my spirit will grow stronger, day by day.
So, I, too, share my sister's feelings exactly.
Our hope lies in life that never ends, but is passed on to others. Our present spiritual life, in Jesus, will be transformed into resurrection glory for us when we see Him, in our flesh.
I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth.
And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God;
I myself will see him with my own eyes–I, and not another.
How my heart yearns within me!
Job 19:25-27 NIV
Matthew Henry Complete Commentary
on the Whole Bible
Romans, Chapter 8
The apostle, [Paul].... applies himself to the consolation of the Lord’s people. Ministers are helpers of the joy of the saints. "Comfort ye, comfort ye my people,’’ so runs our commission, Isa. 40:1. It is the will of God that his people should be a comforted people...we have such a display of the unspeakable privileges of true believers, as may furnish us with abundant matter for joy and peace in believing, that by all these immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation. Many of the people of God have, accordingly, found this chapter a well-spring of comfort to their souls, living and dying....
Verses 6-21 I. The apostle here beings with one signal privilege of true Christians, and describes the character of those to whom it belongs: There is therefore now no condemnation to those that are in Christ Jesus.
v.1. It is the unspeakable privilege and comfort of all those that are in Christ Jesus that there is therefore now no condemnation to them. He does not say, "There is no accusation against them,’’ for this there is; but the accusation is thrown out, and the indictment quashed. He does not say, "There is nothing in them that deserves condemnation,’’ for this there is, and they see it, and own it, and mourn over it, and condemn themselves for it; but it shall not be their ruin. He does not say, "There is no cross, no affliction to them or no displeasure in the affliction,’’ for this there may be; but no condemnation. They may be chastened of the Lord, but not condemned with the world.
Now this arises from their being in Christ Jesus; by virtue of their union with him through faith they are thus secured... He is their advocate, and brings them off. There is therefore no condemnation, because they are interested in the satisfaction that Christ by dying made to the law. In Christ, God does not only not condemn them, but is well pleased with them, Mt. 17:5...
The life of the soul consists in its union with spiritual things by the mind. A sanctified soul is a living soul, and that life is peace; it is a very comfortable life. All the paths of spiritual wisdom are paths of peace. It is life and peace in the other world, as well as in this. Spiritual-mindedness is eternal life and peace [through union with Christ Jesus] begun, and an assuring earnest [downpayment] of the perfection of it...
Verses 6-21 In these verses the apostle represents two more excellent benefits, which belong to true believers. I. Life. The happiness is not barely a negative happiness, not to be condemned; but it is positive, it is an advancement to a life that will be the unspeakable happiness of the man (v. 10, 11): If Christ be in you. Observe, If the Spirit be in us, Christ is in us. He dwells in the heart by faith, Eph. 3:17. Now we are here told what becomes of the bodies and souls of those in whom Christ is. 1. We cannot say but that the body is dead; it is a frail, mortal, dying body, and it will be dead shortly; it is a house of clay, whose foundation is in the dust. The life purchased and promised does not immortalize the body in its present state. It is dead, that is, it is appointed to die, it is under a sentence of death: as we say one that is condemned is a dead man. In the midst of life we are in death: be our bodies ever so strong, and healthful, and handsome, they are as good as dead (Heb. 11:12), and this because of sin. It is sin that kills the body. This effect the first threatening has (Gen. 3:19): Dust thou art. Methinks, were there no other argument, love to our bodies should make us hate sin, because it is such an enemy to our bodies. The death even of the bodies of the saints is a remaining token of God’s displeasure against sin. 2. But the spirit, the precious soul, that is life; it is now spiritually alive, nay, it is life. Grace in the soul is its new nature; the life of the saint lies in the soul, while the life of the sinner goes no further than the body. When the body dies, and returns to the dust, the spirit if life; not only living and immortal, but swallowed up of life. Death to the saints is but the freeing of the heaven-born spirit from the clog and load of this body, that it may be fit to partake of eternal life. When Abraham was dead, yet God was the God of Abraham, for even then his spirit was life, Mt. 22:31, 32. See Ps. 49:15. And this because of righteousness. The righteousness of Christ imputed to them secures the soul, the better part, from death; the righteousness of Christ inherent in them, the renewed image of God upon the soul, preserves it, and, by God’s ordination, at death elevates it, and improves it, and makes it meet to partake of the inheritance of the saints in light. The eternal life of the soul consists in the vision and fruition of God, and both assimilating, for which the soul is qualified by the righteousness of sanctification. I refer to Ps. 17:15, I will behold thy face in righteousness. 3. There is a life reserved too for the poor body at last: He shall also quicken your mortal bodies, v. 11. The Lord is for the body; and though at death it is cast aside as a despised broken vessel, a vessel in which is no pleasure, yet God will have a desire to the work of his hands (Job 14:15), will remember his covenant with the dust, and will not lose a grain of it; but the body shall be reunited to the soul, and clothed with a glory agreeable to it. Vile bodies shall be newly fashioned, Phil. 3:21; 1 Co. 15:42. Two great assurances of the resurrection of the body are mentioned:—(1.) The resurrection of Christ: He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken. Christ rose as the head, and first-fruits, and forerunner of all the saints, 1 Co. 15:20. The body of Christ lay in the grave, under the sin of all the elect imputed, and broke through it. O grave, then, where is thy victory? It is in the virtue of Christ’s resurrection that we shall rise. (2.) The indwelling of the Spirit. The same Spirit that raiseth the soul now will raise the body shortly: By his Spirit that dwelleth in you. The bodies of the saints are the temples of the Holy Ghost, 1 Co. 3:16; 6:19. Now, though these temples may be suffered for awhile to lie in ruins, yet they shall be rebuilt. The tabernacle of David, which has fallen down, shall be repaired, whatever great mountains may be in the way. The Spirit, breathing upon dead and dry bones, will make them live, and the saints even in their flesh shall see God.