Saturday, December 24, 2022

The perfect storm Christmas Eve...


The perfect storm Christmas Eve

My husband and I had plans to take a break and breathe a bit after a hectic busy year.  We were excited to get ready for a Christmas surprise at our church for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  Not letting the secret out here because you will have to attend church to find out!  4PM Saturday and 10AM Sunday at Oasis Christian Fellowship on Five Mile Line Road in Penfield 😊Come and join us!

Back to my story…

As this week progressed, we saw the storm coming into our area. Snow and frigid temps were forecasted.  We knew that the cold temperatures would increase our calls for the company.  Furnaces can only withstand so much with age.  Some of the older furnaces make it a day or so but then the breakdowns occur.  We know this and prepare each year.  However, with Christmas coming we were hoping for a different outcome.  God had other plans. 

The weather hit Friday and the calls started to increase.  The team worked furiously to keep ahead of the demand and by Friday night it seemed like we were winning the battle.  Then after dinner the calls started up again.  Some were willing to wait till Saturday morning, but others were not.  So, my husband regrouped and went back out into the frigid night to help another customer in need.

Today, Christmas Eve the team is out again in full force as we help as many customers as possible before our Church service.  We will continue to tackle all the calls throughout the weekend as needed.  We are so thankful for the team of men who go out into the cold along side us and help our customers instead of staying in their warm home with family.

God wasn’t surprised by this storm that hit our area any more than He was surprised by the storm in Bethlehem thousands of years ago.   

The temperatures were not frigid like here in the Upstate of NY.  However, the lack of rooms available as Joseph and Mary went into the small town to do the census was their personal storm.  God knew this would happen and softened the heart of an inn keeper to allow them to stay in his barn.  

What a way to spend the night.  Pregnant and tired sleeping on a barn floor.  Oh, and by the way, the baby decided it was time to come.  Now?  Really?  I can imagine how Mary must have felt.  “Lord, seriously?”  “Isn’t there a better place to do this after you planned it for so many years?”  I can’t imagine how Joseph felt either.  He wanted to take care of his betrothed and this was the best he could find.  As a man it had to be frustrating.  We read the story shared in the gospel of Luke, but what about the back story?  What about how they were feeling?  Remember, Joseph and Mary were only human.  This had to feel like a step back and not in God’s plan.

What we must remember is that everything may look like a storm, but it is all in God’s hands.  Mary didn’t know what was about to happen as she traveled with Joseph to Bethlehem. 

God did. 

We didn’t know we would be working all weekend into Christmas. 

God did.

His plans were in place.  Nothing surprises God.  Imagine that.

So, if you are facing a storm this Christmas Eve, remember God knows.  He is with you as you fight through the storm.  Remember all the times He has been faithful to you before.  Remember He will always be faithful till the end.

Trust the process

Trust an All-Knowing God.

Merry Christmas! 


Luke 2:1-7

 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to their own town to register. So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

                                           Copyright © 2022 Peggy A. Priest. All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, December 15, 2022

Standing in the Gap...


This term has been used so many times over the years that it sometimes dilutes the meaning.  The act of intercession is so powerful that it can’t be overlooked, and I want to share some thoughts on it here.  The picture above was taken from 'the Google' as I call it.  I thought it represented how we pray/war for others.



In this London stock photo above, it shows three simple words.  Mind the gap.

People see it daily when stepping onto the rail (train).  This small phrase is to focus on what is not there, the gap between the platform and the rail.  This gap may be small but also can be precarious if missed.  The gap is important and should not be overlooked.

It is also important when we stand in the gap for others in prayer.  We can intercede for those who are unable or sometimes unwilling.  Each time we come to the throne of God on behalf of someone else, we are standing in the gap for them. 

There may have been many who stood in the gap for you unbeknownst to you.  I have prayed for many that will never know I did.  That’s okay.  What is important is that we don’t give up.  Even when we don’t see results.  We don’t know what is going on behind the veil that is covering our eyes.  So much is happening behind the scenes.  We need to just trust and continue to intercede. 


For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.  

1 Corinthians 13:12


Judah was the one to stand in the gap for his brother Benjamin who was taken hostage by their brother Joseph.  Neither Judah nor Benjamin knew Joseph was their brother which makes this significant.  Judah who was self-focused, personally guaranteed Benjamin’s safe return to their father Jacob.  This selfless act showed Judah’s heart for his father and his brother.

Moses stood in the gap for the wayward people of Israel when they were sinning in Exodus 32.  After all the grumbling the people of Israel did, Moses still stood in the gap for them.

Abraham stood in the gap for Sodom and asked God to save Sodom if He could find only ten righteous people.  He started with fifty and kept going back to the Lord until there were only ten.  He probably thought for sure there would be ten righteous people with Lot and his family.

Ezekiel knew how important it was to have people stand in the gap.  In Ezekiel 22 God states He was looking for someone to stand in the gap on behalf of the people and build the wall.  He found no one and so the land was judged.

Stephen stood in the gap for those who stoned him in Acts 7.  Imagine interceding for those who are killing you?  That was an incredible testimony which Saul was a witness to.

And the biggest example is Christ who stood in the gap for us when He went to the cross.  He became the bridge to God. 

We can be a bridge as we intercede for our friends and family.  The importance of this act is beyond words.  Every time you pray for someone, God hears.  Reread that sentence.  You have an instant connection with a Holy God who hears all of your prayers.  God is always live streaming.  Your prayers are not in vain. 

He hears you.

Will you stand in the gap with me?


Genesis 18:32

Finally, Abraham said, “Lord, please don’t be angry with me if I speak one more time. Suppose only ten are found there?” And the Lord replied, “Then I will not destroy it for the sake of the ten.”


Psalms 106:23

So he declared he would destroy them. But Moses, his chosen one, stepped between the Lord and the people. He begged him to turn from his anger and not destroy them.

Acts 7:60

 Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep. 

                                             Copyright © 2022 Peggy A. Priest. All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, December 8, 2022

Hope for a Thursday.


There are 17 days till Christmas...

I feel…

How many feeling words can you put into that small sentence?

It all depends on your circumstances.  You might feel excited because you are going to see family.  You might feel anxious for the same reason.  You might feel joyful because your shopping is completed.  You also might feel distressed because there isn’t enough money for the gifts you want to purchase.

I can finish that sentence with so many words this week.  How much time do you have?  😊


Out of all the feelings that come to the surface, let me push one forward to the front of your thoughts.


The bible has over 316 occurrences in 13 translations on Hope.  There must be a reason why, right?  The world has a way of distracting us, and in turn, we humanly attempt to fix things in our own strength.  For example, as fixers by nature, we may drop something on the floor and by pure reflex, pick it back up again.  Unless you are one of those people who drop things and leave…lol just kidding.

Because we are so used to fixing the daily things that get in our way, we often use that same instant reflex to ‘fix’ things that belong in God’s hand.  Abraham was a fixer.  He was given a promise by God.  He was going to be the father of many nations, remember?  After some time, well many years, Abraham decided to do something on his own.  How did that work out?  Not as good as Abraham first thought.  There was a problem, and he saw a solution. 

I have been guilty of doing things in my owns strength.  Finding my own solutions.  I don’t want to ‘trouble’ God with my small issues, so I ‘fix’ them.  That fix often looks like a kindergarten project.  I am sure God smiles at my attempts like we do with our own children.

Again, HOPE.

One of the definitions for Hope is: To have confidence; trust.

We can have confidence that what God started in us, He will complete it.  (Philippians 1:6) However, sometimes we get impatient and try to ‘help’ God.  My impatience is actually a lack of confidence and trust in my God.  When I look at it that way, I feel a warning check in my spirit.  When I sat down to write this, I felt secure in my confidence towards God.  As I continue to write, I realize my secure feeling is shifting more towards fidgety and disappointed in myself.  Thank God for His Grace & Mercies are new every morning!

So back to Hope!

To have confidence and trust.  Trust.  It takes trust (faith) to let go of something and give it over to God.  All the feelings we have about Christmas.

All the stresses we have surrounding the holidays and work and family.

We can trust God with each and every one of them.  How awesome is that?  We can have Hope knowing our God has got this and we know how the book ends.

Hand over your feelings, and stresses over to an All Knowing God.  He’s got this!


Here is a link to verses about Hope.  Do a study on Hope and fill your cup for the holidays…

                                             Copyright © 2022 Peggy A. Priest. All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, December 1, 2022

Mighty rushing waters...


My husband and I stepped away from the drama of life to fill our cups this past weekend.  We were tired and ready for a change.  I needed that time to spend with my Heavenly Father and listen to Him.  I am always blessed when I take the time to block everything out and listen to God’s encouraging words.

When we walked into our hotel room, we were greeted by the incredible view of the falls above.  The majesty of Niagara Falls is breathtaking.  We were blessed by this view all weekend.  During that time God spoke to my heart about the symbolism of the falls. 

First, did you know there were 107 Bible verses about water?  I did not.  Now we both know.  If you would like to do an intriguing study of water, here is the link:

I spent many hours sitting by the window of our room watching the falls.  The water looks calm in the distance.  It seemed to just sit still and hang out in the background.  It looked peaceful.  We don’t realize how fast the water is flowing, or where it is going until you step back and see the bigger picture.  The bigger picture is in the center of the photo above.  God sees the bigger picture.

Far away it looks amazing, but you don’t know the power of the falls till you get closer.

God spoke to me over the weekend while watching the falls every day.  I can stand on the 14th floor and admire the view from afar.  My walk with God can be the same.  14th floor experience.  Beautiful, but not experiencing the power.

As you zoom closer in the picture, you can see the majestic view of the water crashing over the rocks.  There is a commitment required to take the time and step in closer.

The next picture above is a reminder that the closer you get to the Power, the more you can see His works.  The detail in the picture is breathtaking. The mist is coming from below as the waves crash over the rocks.  There is more than 168,000 cubic meters of water that rushes over the falls every minute during peak daytime tourist hours.  The water over the falls have been recorded up to 68 miles per hour.

The next stage is a video of the falls.  You can’t really experience the power in a picture.  Below is a small video of the picture above. 

Listening to the water rushing over the rocks, gives you a better picture of the Power of the water. 

However - being onsite is the final experience of closeness.  Watching a video gives you a better perspective.  Being onsite feeling the mist in the air and listening to the rushing waters immerses you in the moment. Hands on.  Up close and personal.  I can feel the mist in the air.  I can hear the rushing waters.  This is the full immersion experience. 

This is where God wants us to be.  Not in the distance, but up close and personal.  Where the real power is. 

Listen as He speaks words of life into you…

Like a mighty rushing water – There is no stopping God from His Plans with or without you.  The current is pulling us through time. Our time is short.  His Plan is perfect.  His Plan is in motion.  There is no stopping time or the mighty waves of His Hand.  Will you step in and participate in the Power of the Lord?  Please don’t stay on the sidelines, in the distance.  He is asking you to lean in and be a part of His Destiny.  He is sharpening his people to be the tip of the spear – for families, for marriages, for God.


Psalms 93:4

 Mightier than the thunder of the great waters, mightier than the breakers of the sea— the Lord on high is mighty.  


Psalms 89:9

 You rule over the surging sea; when its waves mount up, you still them.  


Isaiah 43:2

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.


Genesis 1:1-8

Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day. And God said, “Let there be a vault between the waters to separate water from water.” So God made the vault and separated the water under the vault from the water above it. And it was so. God called the vault “sky.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the second day.


Here is a link of fun facts about Niagara Falls:

                                               Copyright © 2022 Peggy A. Priest. All Rights Reserved.

Stones of Remembrance...

We got good news yesterday.  Actually, three things happened that made me stop and thank God each time.  One was a reprieve from the storms ...