Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Happy New Year 2020!

Happy New Year
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

It's hard to believe another new year will be here in a few short hours! It seems like the older I get, the faster time goes.  My father used to tell me this would happen but I didn't understand what he meant.

How are you celebrating New Year's Eve tonight? I will be celebrating at home with my wife and two boys, Noah and Samson. The fireworks will annoy Noah but Samson seems to just MEOW his way through the evening.

My wife and I will watch television as we often do in the evening and go to bed early. I'm sure I will be awakened around midnight by Noah wanting to be petted. 

My prayer is that you have a blessed 2020!

So what are your plans for the evening? Are you making any New Year's Resolutions?

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Sunday's Thought!

Sunrise
"Sunrise!"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

WOW! Once again, Christmas Day came and went faster than I could ever say! I hope your day was nice and you were able to enjoy time with those you love. That is important, more than you may realize.

Now, another year will begin on Wednesday. A New Year and New Decade 2020 arrives with all its bells and whistles and celebrations. 2019 was a good year as I got to travel and see many parts of the universe. However, it ended on a bit of a sad note.

A few weeks ago, I went to the funeral of a dear friend who lived for nearly 80 years. I met her and her husband at a church I attended many years ago. She was always a very caring and loving lady making sure everyone was loved. I taught her grandsons in classes at her church for several years and that meant quite a bit to both of us. The funeral was the first Christmassy service that I ever attended. It was a celebration of her life and love of Christmas.

On Christmas Eve, I learned that her husband passed away. It wasn't too surprising to me because, though he wasn't told of his wife's passing, they were very close so it seemed like it should be this way. They were always together, going everywhere and doing everything. Also, he had been ill for quite a while.

Over the years, I have found that time spent with friends and family is, well, priceless.  My parents passed away around 6 years ago. Though I still miss them, it is comforting to know they are no longer suffering from this world's troubles including their health issues. Having spent time with my parents grilling dinner, celebrating Christmas and New Year's, watching Bill Gaither and the Homecoming Friends on TV and at a few concerts, and so many more activities that I have memories to cherish for the rest of my life.

My friends who passed away recently, as well as my parents, went on to Heaven. They believed in Jesus, accepted Him as their Savior, and served Him in so many ways throughout their lives. They were a wonderful witness of God's Love.

Ever wonder what will happen to you after you die? It's not just a matter of being good or being nice. You have to accept Christ as your Savior to go to heaven. If you would like to learn more, please visit Peace With God

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word

2 Corinthians 9:15
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

"Thanks be to God
for his
inexpressible gift!"

- 2 Corinthians 9:15

"Merry Christmas!"

We wish you a very Merry and Blessed Christmas Day!

Sunday, December 22, 2019

Sunday's Thought!



Nativity
"Nativity"
Photo Credit: Jeff Weese, Flickr Creative Commons

What is Christmas All About Anyway?

Focusing again this week on a college buddy's comments about the commercialism of Christmas has got me to thinking, along with many others in this universe, "What is Christmas All About Anyway?"

Every year since I was a little sprat I have always watched a "Charlie Brown Christmas" on TV during the Christmas season. For me, it wasn't Christmas yet until we saw the show. I have fond memories of my childhood with my parents watching the show. We would get all of our snacks and drinks ready so we wouldn't miss a second of the show! Now, even as a senior adult, I love watching the show and find it interesting that it is one of the most popular Christmas shows.

I think I can somewhat relate to Charlie Brown's search for the true meaning of Christmas in some ways. As the season nears, it seems like everyone is going crazy over everything Christmas. Buying Christmas presents, decorating, office parties, family parties, and the like. To me, and even Charlie Brown, there isn't any meaning in all of that. Even directing the Christmas play doesn't seem to help him.

When Charlie Brown asks, " Isn't there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?" Linus says, "Sure, Charlie Brown, I can tell you what Christmas is all about."
"And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, 'Fear not:" [Linus drops his security blanket on purpose] "for behold, I bring unto you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.' And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God, and saying, 'Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.'"[Luke 2:8-14 KJV] (A Charlie Brown Christmas, December 1965)
When I younger, my parents enjoyed playing Santa Claus. As I mentioned last week, they enjoyed buying presents and surprising us. We were taught not to put too much emphasis on the gifts as it's not the point of Christmas. However, they made certain that my brother and I knew what Christmas was all about. The Birth of Jesus Christ. It isn't about all the commercialism that it is today which is probably why I feel like Charlie Brown and wonder what is Christmas all about.

God gave us His Son Jesus on Christmas born in a manger in Bethlehem. He came to earth to save us from our sins. He did not come to condemn us but to save us. If you would like to learn more about Salvation and God's Plan for man, please visit Peace with God.

May you have a Blessed Christmas!

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word!



"But when the
fullness of time 
had come, God sent
forth his Son, born
of woman, born
under the law."

- Galatians 4:4

Monday, December 16, 2019

Railroad Photography! Norfolk Southern Leading Intermodal Over the Potomac, Shepherdstown, WV

Norfolk Southern Leading Intermodal Over the Potomac, Shepherdstown, WV
"Norfolk Southern Leading Intermodal Over the Potomac, Shepherdstown, WV"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

Last winter, January 2019 to be specific, I had the privilege of spending the day watching trains at various locations through Virginia and West Virginia with my railfan buddy Noah, my dog! We usually take several railfan trips together since we love each other's company!

We had recently discovered the trestle bridge from Maryland into Shepherdstown, West Virginia or vice-versa. As we were exploring the area at the Rumsey Monument two Norfolk Southern Locomotives leads an intermodal train over the Potomac River. 

I invite you to follow my work by email! You will receive every new post directly to your email inbox. Best of all? I do not share your information nor do I do any sales emails which go on and on and on until you have no idea what you were reading. Enter your email in the widget on the right side of my journal.

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Sunday's Thought!

Christmas Gifts
"Christmas Gifts"
Photo by Eugene Zhyvchik on Unsplash

Continuing on my Christmas theme for this month, I got to thinking about the Christmas presents that my family and friends gave me when I was younger. If my family was still living, gift-giving would probably still be happening among our family but it would have stayed simple over the years.

My mother used to start looking for, or maybe I should say paying attention to, next year's Christmas presents almost as soon as she gave us the presents for the current year. She had a money limit but she wanted the gift to be special. It would be something that I would not buy for myself AND within her price range. I remember the year she gave me my first camera. She found the perfect camera for me and it was on sale so she was able to get it for me.

My parents would not go in debt for Christmas presents for my brother and I or anyone else for that matter. She spaced out buying the presents throughout the year so she would not owe so much money all at once. If I know her, she probably did that so she could pay cash and not use her credit card.

For as long as I can remember, Christmas day and opening the presents my parents gave me as a young boy was a special time. I knew it would be fun but what would they, and Santa Claus, give me?

As I look back and think about the gifts, it's not the gifts that matter. It was the thought that was behind them. It was the simplicity and beauty of being given a gift from someone who loved you no matter what.

This reminds me of what God did for us. All of us. Not just a few select people. Every last one of us. He gave us a very Special Gift on that first Christmas Day, the birth of His Son Jesus. He was born in a manger, a much simpler place than most of our hospitals. He lived a short life of 33 years doing many works of ministry and showing God's Love. However, it cost Him everything, God His Son and Jesus His Life. He was crucified on a cross so that we could be forgiven of our sins and spend eternity in heaven with Him.

If you would like to accept Christ's awesome Gift to us, the Gift of Salvation- eternal life, please read and pray through the following-

Admit
Admit that you are a sinner, just like everyone else born into this world, until we  confess to Jesus Christ and ask His forgiveness:

"(23) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (24) and are justified 
by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
- Romans 3:23-24, ESV

"(23) For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." 
- Romans 6:23, ESV

Believe
Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ:

(16) “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him 
should not perish but have eternal life." - John 3:16, ESV 

Confess
Confess your sins in a prayer to the Lord Jesus Christ:

(9) "because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved."
 - Romans 10:9, ESV

(13) "For 'everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.'”  
 - Romans 10:13, ESV

Pray
"Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner and do not deserve eternal life. 
I believe You died and rose from the grave to make me a new creation 
and to prepare me to dwell in your presence forever. 
Jesus, come into my life and take control, 
forgive my sins and save me. I place my trust in You alone
 for my salvation and I accept your free gift of eternal life."

Amen

Now, you're a Christian - Welcome to the family.  So, what's next-

  • Find a 100% Bible-believing, teaching, preaching church. Here are a few resources:
  • Find believers (Christians) to fellowship with
  • Get baptized
  • Buy a Bible
  • Read the Book of John
  • Get in a Bible Study
  • Daily: Pray and read the Bible
  • Find a Mentor
  • Learn how to Pray
  • If you find yourself asking "Why am I not perfect" or "Why am I still doing wrong things?" Be sure to talk with your Pastor, a Christian friend or a mentor.

Saturday, December 14, 2019

Railroad Video: Norfolk Southern Locomotives 9352, 9801 Lead an Intermodal Through Cassandra Railroad Overlook Park, Lilly, PA



A park popular with railfans is the Cassandra Railroad Overlook Park in Lilly, PA. It's an old trestle-type bridge which goes over 3 Norfolk Southern Railroad tracks learning in and or out of Horseshoe Curve, in Altoona, PA.

On my last trip to Cassandra Railroad Overlook Park in October 2019, I created a few videos of the trains going through the area. I hope you enjoy!

By the way, if you enjoy these railroad videos, please consider subscribing to my YouTube Channel. Also, I would appreciate hearing from you in the comments. Is there any information you would like me to include in my videos?

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word!

Matthew 1:23
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

"'Behold,
the virgin
shall conceive
and bear a son,
and they shall
call his name
Immanuel'
(which means,
God with us)"

- Matthew 1:23

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Sunday's Thought!

Photo by Gareth Harper on Unsplash
"Christmas Nativity"
Photo by Gareth Harper on Unsplash

This week, as I thought about my friend's Facebook comments about Christmas not being about giving or receiving gifts and all the crazy commercialism associated with the season which we are bombarded with, I got to thinking about why I believe.

I have been blessed with having been born to Christian parents who had me in church every Sunday, every Wednesday night, every revival service, and every Vacation Bible School I could possibly attend. My parents were very involved in the church too. Dad was a Minister of Music and Mom played the organ, sang a few duets with Dad, and taught in various areas with youth.

However, that scenario, though awesome it might have been at times, didn't make me a Christian, didn't save me, and only had a little effect on why I believe. Mostly because I was young and, as most young children do, I had to find out what I believe- the whole "I know better than my parent's thing." Also, as I said last week, my parents or Christian friends cannot get me into heaven. I have to make the decision myself.

As life would have it, I became a Christian in my college years. Actually, I remember asking Christ into my heart as a 6-year-old but a lot of things happen along the way so I rededicated my life.  After years as a youth and in college having seen many hypocrites and Christian double-speak I got away from attending church. I never got away from God- for which I am very thankful. I didn't attend church regularly and begin to hang out with people that I probably shouldn't. Fortunately for me, I didn't get into any really bad trouble but life wasn't what it could have been.  As I went through this period of "rebellion" I wasn't aware that God was watching out for my best interests or what was best for me. But, He was.

As I have struggled throughout my life with chronic health issues, I have seen God's Hand come alongside me and make the impossible come true. He directed me to doctors who knew about my health issues and were able to help. When some doctors shared some not-so-good news, God's strength was provided to get me through. Or, give me comfort when the struggles were difficult to handle.  These times showed me God and His Love for me.

Throughout my career and life, there were many times when God directed me to the right job or to make the right choices or finding the right home to live in. As challenges came along, God was there to guide me in the right way. Many times, maybe even most, I thought that I was just living life. Later when I would look back, think over something, I learned it was God.

Later in life, I had to take care of my parents while they were ill and subsequently passed away. The time caring for my mother was very challenging but God worked through my wife to help us with some challenging parts of her care. God comforted and gave me a peace beyond understanding when it came to her passing. When it came to taking care of my father, I had to do it by myself hoping and praying that I would make the right decisions. There were so many times during this time that I knew God was there helping to make the right decisions, directing the doctors to do the right thing. Many times, these were the hardest days I have had to do in my life but I knew God was there. 

For me, first and foremost, to think about a God who would send His Son, Jesus, to be born in a lowly manger, live a short life of 33 years, then be willing to be crucified on a cross for my sins is more than I can comprehend. This love for me goes beyond what anyone in my life has ever done for me. I have only had a few friends in my life who would have that much love for me. It is explained in this verse-

For God so loved the world,[a] that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes 
in him should not perish but have eternal life." - John 3:16, (ESV)

Yes, I believe. Not because I was told to but because He is alive and has shown His Love for me.  Christmas is a time to celebrate the Gift of the Birth of a Saviour. 

If you would like to learn more about God, Jesus, and the Christian life, please visit Peace With God!

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Two Trains at Cassandra Railroad Overlook Park, Lilly, PA



My railfanning trip to Pennsylvania in October with my wife and my dog Noah continues in this video of "Two Trains at Cassandra Railroad Overlook Park, Lilly, PA."

I enjoy visiting this park because it allows you to look down upon the trains as they head to Horseshoe Curve, Altoona, PA, in the east or left to head west. Looking over the bridge and headrail you can see aspects of trains that would you not normally see when standing on the ground. The other part I like is having a natural setting of trees and mountains to photograph the trains rather than the city or town setting.

Cassandra Railroad Overlook Park is close to a few other great locations to watch trains including Horseshoe Curve National Historic Landmark, Bennington Curve, Tunnelhill at Gallitzin, and Bennington Curve to name a few. At the entrance, there is a sign listing several other parks or locations to railfan.

Please share in the comments below your favorite east coast railfanning spots.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word

While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks by Night by Nahum Tate
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

"While shepherds watched 
their flocks by night, 
all seated on the ground, 
an angel of the Lord came down, 
and glory shone around. 
'Fear not,' said he for
 mighty dread had seized 
their troubled mind 
"glad tidings of great joy
I bring to you and all mankind."

- Nahum Tate, 1700 

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Garden Perspectives! White and Maroon-Brushed Tuber Dahlia

"White and Maroon-Brushed Tuber Dahlia"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography
A most beautiful flower to grow in the garden is the Dahlia. Depending on where you live, they are annuals or perennials. Either way, they brighten the day with their variety of colors, shapes, and sizes!

I created this image in a neighbor's garden. It is available on traditional archival paper print suitable for you to frame, canvas, and metal. If you would like to learn more about my products, please email me at allenpearsonphotography@gmail.com or visit Allen Pearson Photography.

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Sunday's Thought!

Sale!
"Sale!"
Photo by 
Justin Lim on Unsplash

A guy I know who has been a little critical of how the world does things especially around Thanksgiving, Black Friday Sales, and Christmas caused me to do a little bit of thinking. His comments were right, but they caused me to say, "well, instead of criticizing, share why you believe, why we celebrate Christmas, why we don't get "excited" or go "crazy" with all the Black Friday Sales and the bombardment from various outlets and media.

I dread Black Friday Sales every year! It's turned a wonderful time of year into the most annoying time of year. My phone constantly rings. So much so that I have to turn the ringer off to get work done. Of course, that concerns me because of my senior father-in-law who might call and I could miss it. My email inbox receives 100's of emails a day. Oh my word, if I do not check it and delete unnecessary emails, it will easily pile up to five hundred or so. I have to go through them all checking the ones I do not recognize because it could be a new client.

I understand businesses need to make ends meet. It's important to do so if you want to stay in business but the constant bombardment has become way too much. A phrase from one TV recently commercial got my attention, "Get all the Christmas Presents I Need...." Hmmm.... all I need? It's crossed the line.

Most of the "Christmas Wish Lists" I have given Santa Claus when I was a child, given to my parents, or even to wife over the years has never included anything I need. Only what I want. There is a difference. Need is something I would have to have to survive this life. Like underwear, a shirt or pants. Want is something I would like to have to make something more fun in this life.... like an HO Scale model of a Chesapeake and Ohio Locomotive... let's say.

I do not believe, nor will I say, that Black Friday sales or even all the Christmas sales we have been hearing about since September are evil. All the glimmer, gold, TV's as big as many houses, new cars, jewelry, toys, and the like will not bring you true happiness and contentment. You may think so but that's really only for a while. Just wait for the newer edition or version or whatever comes along you may find yourself wanting it. True happiness and contentment of the heart only come from knowing God and serving Him.

Over the years, I've noticed that God has provided or taken care of my needs. He's directed my paths in life to do what He wanted me to do to provide the resources for my needs. This doesn't mean that I have everything I want. If it did, I'd be driving a Hummer2 and would have everything else I wanted too.

Look past all the Black Friday deals and the hoopla that is made every year at Christmas and find the true meaning of Christmas, "the Birth of Jesus Christ." Visit a local church, especially one hosting a Christmas pageant to find the true meaning of Christmas.

Becoming a Christian is an awesome and blessed thing to become. To learn more, please visit Peace With God.

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Norfolk Southern Locomotives Locomotives 3636 and 9425 at Horseshoe Curve, Altoona, PA


`
I posted another video to my YouTube Channel from the railfanning adventures I recently did in Altoona, Pennsylvania. Since some of you might not be subscribers to my channel yet, I thought I would share it for you on my Photography Journal.

As I think I mentioned before, I am new to videoing trains and my railfanning adventures. I am sharing them so that people who may not be able to go out to see trains or go to places where I go, can enjoy watching trains.

While I am still trying to learn how to capture or get information about the trains as they roar by me, I am not having as much success as I would like. I will get there one day.

I would like to know what information you consider important when you are viewing train videos. Please share in the comments below. If you know of a resource to support your comments, please share that too.

Friday, November 29, 2019

Railroad Photography! January in Shenandoah Junction, WV

January in Shenandoah Junction, WV
"January in Shenandoah Junction, WV"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography
One of my favorite railroad landscapes created last winter was at the Shenandoah Junction, West Virginia. I had traveled to the area with my dog Noah who comes along on all my railfanning trips these days. The weather changed from cloudy to rain to snow back to sunny and back to cloudy again. All in a matter of an hour or so.

While I was sitting in my car waiting for the next train to roar through the Shenandoah Junction, the sun peaked through the clouds. I saw the beauty of the sun on the railroad tracks and landscape and created this image.

As the weather changes in Virginia, I am learning to find more and more interesting adventures to do in the chillier and even colder weather. Thanks to a friend who I met at a church several years ago who absolutely loves the winter weather. She said, "if you look for the beauty in the winter, you will find it!" She was right. I was too busy freezing to death and trying to keep warm to notice it.

I enjoy traveling to Shenandoah Junction because of the likelihood of seeing trains. The railroad tracks in this image are used by CSX Transportation transversing east to west. Just west of this image is a bridge transversing the Norfolk Southern Railroad north and south.

Shenandoah Junction became the community it is because of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad in the 1830s and it's a junction with the Norfolk and Western Railway at the center of the area.

Please visit my photography galleries at Allen Pearson Photography - Railroad Gallery! If you are interested in purchasing any products, please email me at allenpearsonphotography@gmail.com.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving
(C) Storyblocks, Used by Permission

May you have a blessed Thanksgiving Day!

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word

Psalms 7:17
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

"I will give to the Lord
the thanks due to his
righteousness, and I 
will sing praise to the
name of the Lord,
the Most High."

- Psalms 7:17

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Sunday's Thought!

Being Thankful
"Being Thankful!"
Photo by Joseph Gonzalez on Unsplash

Thankful. A powerful word with quite a bit of meaning. With Thanksgiving this coming Thursday, I've been doing quite a bit of thinking about why I am thankful.

In thinking about being thankful, the first I thought about is God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, and the Bible. Followed by my lovely wife, my dog Noah, and my cat Samson. I am thankful for my parents and brother too who have gone on to heaven. I am especially thankful for the many blessings which God has provided over the years of my life. Throughout my life, God has blessed me with what I have always needed whenever I needed it. He has never failed.

Now, don't misunderstand me. That does not mean that I am wealthy or rich and have everything thing in the universe that I want. I don't. Also, it doesn't mean that I have had a perfect life without any problems or tragedies. However, in all of my life, God has provided what I needed to get through whatever was going on. For that I am very thankful. 

What am I most thankful for? I am most thankful for the fact that Jesus forgave me from my sins when I was a very young man. I was fortunate to be raised in the church by two loving Christian parents. They taught me the importance of God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, and the Bible from day one. However, regardless of their teachings and what I was taught by the church we were attending, it doesn't mean that I have instant, immediate, or even automatic inheritance or entrance to heaven when I die. No, each person must make the decision to follow Christ and become a Christian for themselves. I remember a college professor saying "You can't get to heaven on your parent's coattails." I must ask God for forgiveness myself. I did and it's been an awesome blessing all of my life.

If you would like to learn more about God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and the Bible, please visit Peace With God.

What are you thankful for? Please share in the comments below.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word

Psalms 107:8-9
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

"Let them thank the Lord
for his steadfast love,
for his wondrous works
to the children of man!
For he satisfies the 
longing soul,
and the hungry soul he
fill with good things."

- Psalms 107:8-9

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Sunday's Thought!

"Great Falls National Park"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

Sold Out
TGIF Today God Is First, Volume 1,
by Os Hillman

"But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ." Philippians 3:7

George Mueller was a man known for building orphanages by faith in the mid-1800s. He raised literally millions of dollars for his orphanages, yet died with little in his own bank account. When asked about his conversion experience he commented,
"I was converted in November of 1825, but I only came into the full surrender of the heart four years later, in July 1829. The love of money was gone, the love of place was gone, the love of position was gone, and the love of worldly pleasures and engagements was gone. God, God alone became my portion. I found my all in Him; I wanted nothing else. And by the grace of God this has remained, and has made me a happy man, an exceedingly happy man, and it led me to care only about the things of God. I ask affectionately, my beloved brethren, have you fully surrendered the heart to God, or is there this thing or that thing with which you have taken up irrespective of God? I read a little of the scriptures before, but preferred other books; but since that time the revelation He has made of Himself has become unspeakably blessed to me, and I can say from my heart, God is an infinitely lovely Being. Oh, be not satisfied until in your own inmost soul you can say, God is an infinitely lovely Being!" [Basil Miller, Man of Faith and Miracles (Minneapolis, Minnesota, Bethany House Publishers, n.d.)]
Many will never get to the place where George Mueller was in his spiritual life, because we are unwilling to release control of these areas of which he speaks. If we do release control, it usually is due to a process that God brings us through. Paul got knocked off a horse and was spoken to personally before he was willing to listen and follow completely. Peter had to live with Jesus three years and he still denied Him. It was only later, after he denied Jesus and realized how weak he was in his own faith, that he became fully committed to the Savior.

What will it take for you to fully surrender? You will know that you have given full surrender when power, money, and position no longer have meaning in your life. Paul said he came to a place where his life was the life of Christ only. It is a sacrificial life, but it is also a life of freedom, purpose, and meaning. Let God take full control and see His life lived fully through you.

Devotion used by written permission of TGIF Today God is First, Marketplace Leaders.

To place your trust in God, learn more about God's Plan of Salvation and repentance, please visit Peace With God!

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word

Hebrews 12:3
(C) Allen Pearson Photography


"Consider him who
endured from sinners
such hostility against
himself, so that you 
may not grow weary or
fainthearted."

- Hebrews 12:3

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Nature Photography! The Art of Tree, Shenandoah National Park,Tree on Rocks

"The Art of Tree, Shenandoah National Park, Tree on Rocks"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

When I first started photographing around 2003 or 2004, my interest or fascination with it was nature. I loved capturing the beauty of nature, especially that which most people miss because they are in a hurry or are just not paying attention.

Another aspect of nature that I love to photograph are trees. I love capturing the silhouette of trees against the sky or maybe a mountain or other natural background. The trees grow up into the sky and into many different directions with the branches reaching out here and there.

Often, as I am walking through the woods by trees or even in my neighborhood where there are a lot of old trees, I like to think about the history these trees have seen. Where they just young trees when the First and Second Battles of Bull Run (Manassas) raged through the countryside? What history have they seen? If they could think like that and share their thoughts, wouldn't it be interesting?

Please visit my photography galleries at www.allenpearsonphotography.com. Should you be interested in purchasing my works, please contact me at allenpearsonphotography@gmail.com.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Honoring Our Veterans!


"Stars and Stripes"
Photo by Lucas Sankey on Unsplash
Thank you to all the Veterans of the US Armed Forces for all that you have done, all you do, and will continue to do to serve the United States of America and it's citizens protecting our freedoms.

A huge "Thank you" today and every day!

HAPPY VETERANS DAY!

THANK YOU!


Sunday, November 10, 2019

Sunday's Thought!

"A Deer at Manassas National Battlefield Park"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

Can You Know You’re Saved For Sure?
By Jack Graham, PowerPoint Ministries

Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. 
He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.
- John 5:24

I don’t have to tell you that there’s a fascination today with prolonging life. People are exercising more, trying to take better care of themselves, and doing whatever they can to squeeze a few more years out of their lives.

But the fact is (and we all know it’s true) that the chances of you being here 100 years from now are slim to none. That means at some point in the next 100 years, you’re going to have a moment when you stand before God and what you’ve done with Jesus Christ in this life will determine your eternal destiny.

Sounds heavy, right? It’s a sobering thought that all of us must deal with the issues of life, death, and eternity. Perhaps you’ve already made the decision to follow Christ and you’re certain of your eternal destiny. Or, maybe you’re on the fence today, unsure of what God is going to say on that day.

But here’s the truth: You can know today where you will spend eternity. If you believe Christ died for you, eternal life isn’t a matter of speculation – it’s assured! Don’t go another day without trusting in Jesus to save you from your sins. Believe in Him today and you’ll never live apart from God!

BELIEVE THAT JESUS DIED FOR YOU AND YOU’LL NEVER EXPERIENCE LIFE APART FROM GOD.

To learn more about God's Plan for your life, please visit PowerPoint Ministries with Jack Graham, New Life in Christ.

Devotion used by written permission of PowerPoint Ministries with Jack Graham.

Friday, November 8, 2019

Norfolk Southern 9976 and 9593 Locomotives at Horseshoe Curve, Altoona, PA, by Train Dog!



My dog Noah and I have begun our railfanning season with a trip to Horseshoe Curve National Historic Landmark, Altoona, PA, where we saw around 20 trains roaring through the curves!

I have started experimenting with recording videos on my new Nikon D3500. The camera has a simple-to-use video function which allows me to simply turn on the video and capture trains or whatever in whatever setting I would like without too much trouble.

My intention in creating train videos is to share with those who may not be able to get out and watch trains themselves. As I learn more information about trains, I will share it with you by including it in the video.

If you would like to receive email notices about my new productions, please visit my
YouTube Channel and click on the "subscribe" button. One more step, click on the little bell symbol to customize when you want to receive email notices.

Please share in the comments below what you like or dislike about this video and what you would like to see in future ones.

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Nature Photography! Clouds Over the Great Smoky Mountains!




I have to admit, this photo was taken and created for a specific friend who happens to truly absolutely love the mountains. She has been an inspiration to me to find the beauty in the mountains and photograph. To her, the mountains are as close to heaven as you can get on this earth. I've often wondered if she would move to a cabin in the mountains to be there all the time when she retires. So, I thank her for turning my eyes to the beauty of the mountains with this photo.

My images are available on traditional archival paper which you can frame, in metal or canvas which arrive ready to hang, and a set of 10 notecards! If you would like more information, please contact me at allenpearsonphotography@gmail.com.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word

Francis Chan
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

"Our greatest fear
should not be one of failure
but of succeeding at things
in life that don't really matter!"

- Francis Chan

Sunday, November 3, 2019

Sunday's Thought!

Fall at Walney Park
"Fall at Walney Park"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

This week has been unbelievably crazy! I had just returned from a trip with my wife to Indiana. We drove it so we could make some stops along the way. So, the week started out tired. But, that was alright with me because I had a lot of fun along the way.

One of the stops was in West Virginia where we caught up with some friends we made on our trip to South Africa earlier this summer. They were a lot of fun and such a pleasure to meet that we had to catch up with them for lunch. Later in the day, I caught up with two friends I went to college with some 30 years ago. Though I see her on Facebook quite often and laugh at the jokes and stuff she shares, it'd been a long time since I saw her. I went to college with her husband too. A very good man in so many ways. I know his life is blessed with a lot of laughs along the way.

My week began on a good note, I didn't have to work at the store, which was my usual shift, so I had Monday to catch up on what I needed to do. Of course, the incredibly warm weather drew me outside so I spent a good part of the day doing outdoor chores. My dog Noah and I took a relaxing 3-mile walk around the neighborhood too.

As the week went on, it got crazier. I had an important appointment for my dog Noah at the Veterinarian. He was scheduled for a dental exam and check-up. Of course, I was stressed out about this before the day even got there. We love our Veterinarian as she has been incredible in taking care of Noah, but any procedure can become a problem so though I didn't "intentionally" worry about him, I was worried about him for several days. As it turned out, the exam prior to the procedure showed he wouldn't need the surgery after all. Was I ever relieved and jumping for joy!

That same day held another stressful moment for me. I was covering a different shift at the store because my manager needed to be out of the store for a few hours. However, the stress was my resignation from my part-time job at the hobby store. I enjoyed my part-time job but retail really isn't for me. So, I decided to give my two-weeks notice. I was truly amazed at how God created an opening for me to share my resignation with my boss without stressing out.

Friday was to be my last day at the store but a meeting with my Pastors preceded it. We met for lunch and had an awesome discussion about the church and it's future outreach plans. As I was asked to help out the church in the area of outreach, my heart became extremely happy. Again. I noticed my heart feeling happy over the past few days but wasn't sure what it was all about until I learned about the church's needs.

As I look back over the past year with its challenging events, I am now understanding why I went through several of those problems because God was preparing me for important challenges in life. I am overwhelmed with the realization that God was watching out for me, loving me and making sure that everything I need was provided. The Scripture, "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose." - Romans 8:28, ESV, came to mind several times. 

While I know that life has it's challenges and tragic events, being a Christian doesn't make you immune to those, but it does give you confidence that God's Got It! He's Got Your Back! 

If you would like to learn more about God's Plan of Salvation for Man, His Plan for our lives, please visit Peace With God

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Daylight Saving Time Ends - Sunday, November 3, 2019

Daylight Saving Time
(C) Storyblocks, Used by Permission

I have to admit, today is my least favorite day of the year. Tomorrow morning at 2 a.m., Daylight Saving Time ends and the days really seem so much shorter than they should be. Where did the time go?

I have had a great summer and early fall season. The summer was hot and sunny providing me many opportunities to travel and be outside in the yard or garden. It's taken a few years into retirement to really learn what makes my heart happy. This year, I made it. Be outside in the yard or garden, walk Noah, and take Noah with me everywhere I can!

Though I will miss summer's heat and sunny days, it is time to let others who, for some really weird reason, love the colder weather including all the ice and snow which could arrive pretty soon. Who knows.

Don't forget- 
Fall Back!
Turn Those Clocks
Back One Hour
Before Bedtime Tonight!

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word

Babbie Mason

"God is too wise to be mistaken,
God is too good to be unkind.
So when you don't understand,
when you don't see His plan,
when you can't trace His hand,
trust His heart."

- Babbie Mason

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Railroad Photography! NS Locomotives at Horseshoe Curve, Altoona, PA

NS Locomotives at Horseshoe Curve, Altoona, PA
NS Locomotives at Horseshoe Curve, Altoona, PA
(C) Allen Pearson Photography
My wife, my dog, and I kicked off my railfanning season with an excellent trip to Horseshoe Curve National Historic Landmark in Altoona, Pennsylvania. I discovered this to be an excellent place to watch trains a few years ago. My first trip here was such an awesome adventure, I decided to make a yearly trip here! Though next year, I might have to make two trips, one to end my current season in early Spring and again next Fall to start up again.

When I go out railfanning locally, my dog Noah always goes with me. He loves going places with me and I love having his companionship! I have gotten so used to his traveling with me that I don't like to go without him. Since the weather gets a little too hot for him in late Spring and early Summer, we typically do not go out much during the summer- this year, even locally.

My dog Noah and I are making our plans to head out around once or twice a month to watch the trains go through wherever we are! Please follow our adventures by subscribing to this blog. To follow Noah's adventures, subscribe to: from The Dog's Paw!

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Sunday, October 27, 2019

Sunday's Thought!


The Many Colors of Fall
"The Many Colors of Fall"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

I was driving home yesterday through the state of West Virginia. I've been through West Virginia many times as my mother's side of the family is from there so I've got a lot of great childhood memories. However, I'd never driven from one side of the state to the other especially not in the Fall season. My drive took me down winding and curvy roads with a few 4-lane roads to give me a breather between the extremely sharp curves which occasionally made me think I would see the back-end of my car still coming around the curve as the front-end was going into it.

My wife and I were returning from a fan retreat with the Booth Brothers in Shipshewana, IN. It was a week of awesome music, inspiration, and lots of humor! The time spent there reminded me of how much God takes care of me in this life. He blessed my wife and me with the time at the retreat and then as we were driving home, an incredible trip.

When my wife took the wheel of the car to give me a break, I couldn't help but notice how beautiful God created the West Virginia mountains with its incredibly beautiful fall foliage. In some parts of the mountains were areas where the trees hadn't changed colors yet so green leaves were interspersed throughout. In some parts, it looked like God had taken a paintbrush mixed with various shades of red, yellow, and orange and splashed it across the mountains. The landscape was so incredibly beautiful.

As we drove through the mountains, at first, I began wondering if it was wise to drive this route instead of the interstate. I soon realized that the scenery along the way was a Gift from God who was directing us through His Creation instead of rushing through and missing the beauty of the Fall season and weather. To think, I know the Creator who singlehandedly and perfectly created the beautiful scenery we drove through was unfathomable.

How do I know the Creator? When I became a Christian in my college years, I gave my life to Christ. I was raised in the church and thought I was saved at a very young age of 6. However, a college professor instigated a few thoughts in my mind about whether or not I was a Christian so I confirmed it with Jesus and made sure that I was. Jesus has been a part of my life and guiding my steps since that young age.

Many times the idea of becoming a Christian is blurred by someone or something making it sound out to be more difficult or complicated than it is. Or, we believe we are not worthy because we have committed so many wrongs in our lives. First, it isn't complicated and, no, we do not deserve it but God loves us and says that we are if we accept Him as our Lord and Savior. It is as easy as prayfully reading through the following steps:

Admit
Admit that you are a sinner, just like everyone else born into this world, until we confess to Jesus Christ and ask His forgiveness:

"(23) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (24) and are justified 
by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
- Romans 3:23-24, ESV

"(23) For the wages of sin is death, 
but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
- Romans 6:23, ESV

Believe
Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ:

"(16) For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, 
that whoever believes in him 
should not perish but have eternal life." - John 3:16, ESV 

Confess
Confess your sins in a prayer to the Lord Jesus Christ:

"(9) because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord 
and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. "
- Romans 10:9, ESV

"(13) For 'everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.'” 
- Romans 10:13, ESV

Pray
"Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner and do not deserve eternal life. 
I believe You died and rose from the grave to make me a new creation 
and to prepare me to dwell in your presence forever. 
Jesus, come into my life and take control, 
forgive my sins and save me. I place my trust in You alone
for my salvation and I accept your free gift of eternal life."

Amen

Now, you're a Christian - Welcome to the family. So, what's next-
  • Find a 100% Bible-believing, teaching, preaching church. Here are a few resources:
  • Find believers (Christians) to fellowship with.
  • Get baptized.
  • Buy a Bible
  • Read the Book of John.
  • Get in a Bible Study.
  • Daily: Pray and read the Bible
  • Find a Mentor
  • Learn how to Pray
  • If you find yourself asking "Why am I not perfect" or "Why am I still doing wrong things?" Be sure to talk with your Pastor, a Christian friend or a mentor.

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Sunday, October 20, 2019

Sunday's Thought!

"The Earth and the Heavens"
(C) Storyblocks, Used by Permission

What Do You Say Will be Earth’s Greatest Event?
by Adrian Rogers, Love Worth Finding Ministries

"... and the Lamb shall overcome them: for He is Lord of lords, and King of kings:
 and they that are with Him are called, and chosen, and faithful."
- Revelation 17:14

The Second Coming of Jesus will be the greatest event of all ages. It’s one of the grand theological truths taught from Genesis to Revelation.

· The New Birth is vitally important, but it’s mentioned only 9 times in the New Testament.

· Baptism is vitally important, but it’s mentioned only 20 times in the New Testament.

· Repentance, important and required, is mentioned only 70 times in the Bible.

· But the return of the Lord Jesus Christ is mentioned at least 380 times!

One out of every 25 verses points with an eager finger to the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. We’re living in a time where Jesus could come at any moment. Some glorious morning, all will be peace when Jesus comes again.

How are you getting ready for His Second Coming? What if He came this very hour? Is your heart prepared? Are you ready? Listen to some of the last words Paul wrote before his execution: “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love His appearing” (2 Timothy 4:7-8). Do you love the thought of His appearing?

For more from Love Worth Finding and Pastor Adrian Rogers and to learn about salvation, please visit Love Worth Finding - Assurance of Salvation

Devotion used by written permission of Love Worth Finding.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Wednesday's Word! Encouragement from God's Word

Galatians 6:7
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

"Do not be deceived:
God is not mocked,
for whatever one sows,
that will he also
reap."

- Galatians 6:7

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Sunday's Thought

"The Heavens At Sunrise"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography
One morning, a few weeks ago, I found myself looking out the front window of my house staring out of the sky. The neighborhood was doing its usual thing, school buses picking up students, the trash trucks making their rounds and people heading off to work in their cars. The neighborhood will soon settle down into its daily quiet with only the noises of birds singing in the air.

As I stared out into the sky, I found myself wondering if the Promise of God's Return to take Christians to heaven is really true. Is He really going to make everything great and take care of those who love Him? The Promise of God's Second Coming is a teaching that I can remember from the very early days of my youth. I have believed it to be true as it is in God's Word and some people who I highly respect taught it to me over the years of my life.

But now, for some reason, I am staring into the skies debating its validity. For a bit, I wondered if it was a fairy tale as so many these days are saying. Or maybe it's just some speculation that was taught over the years. Have I spent my life believing something that wasn't real? Wasn't truthful?

As I went back into my studio, I got to thinking about those thoughts. If you know me very well, you know I can tend to over-analyze something sometimes beyond belief. I wondered about the people who have gone before, like my family or the people in the Bible Stories for days of old. Have they really gone to heaven or have they just died and been buried. These are questions and thoughts that really cannot be answered. I will only know the truth for sure, for absolute certain, after I die and go on to heaven. Or?

As I thought, I felt a wave of happiness and contentment go over me. If what I was taught isn't true and God isn't coming back to take me to heaven or I will not go to heaven when I die, it really doesn't matter because I have had a happy and content life serving and worshipping God from a very early age. It was almost as if it was God's Presence reminding me to hang on... He will be coming soon.

So if I die and find it isn't true, it doesn't matter because I am happy and have been content in this life. I will just die and be buried and remembered by my wife and friends. I really haven't lost anything at all. I have served and worshipped an awesome God and am very thankful for the ability and blessings of doing so.

If I die and find it is true, God will take me to heaven where I will spend eternal life with other Christians I've known in my life including my parents and brother. I will be blessed with worshipping God throughout eternity. Eternal happiness beyond my ability to describe! I haven't lost a thing.

I found God's Love, His Plan of Salvation for man, happiness, and peace beyond my understanding by giving my life to Christ at a young age..college age I believe. Are you ready for what happens to you when you die? If you would like to learn more, please visit Peace With God.