Sunday, February 16, 2020

Sunday's Thought!

Allen Pearson Photography
"Gerber Daisy Bouquet"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

This week was the 9 year anniversary of the death of my mother. The date was reminded to me by Facebook re-sharing with me something I wrote. It brought back memories.

I think one of the hardest things I have ever gone through in this life was when my mother became ill, had a stroke, and died. Before she had the stroke, besides her not feeling well, there were really no visible issues. There were plenty of medical problems going on behind the scenes though. Which, eventually, this led to her having a stroke which put her in the hospital, followed by rehab, and then a nursing home for memory care.

After the stroke, she did not have any physical issues, but she did have problems issues which meant she could not remember most people's names, form sentences which made sense to us, and a host of other things. It was a very challenging and heart-breaking time. To have your mother not be able to say your name or anything you understood, though the sentences were complete and spoken clearly, ripped my heart apart.

However, I noticed throughout the time of caring for my mother, I had a calm and comfort within me despite my being stressed out or upset about the situation. I know, how can that be? As it happened many times, including just before she passed away, I began to understand it was God giving His Comfort and Love.

After my mother passed away, I felt this strange comfort and a peace that passes all understanding. When I realized it was that, I remember reading in the Bible:

"And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts
 and your minds in Christ Jesus." - Philippians 4:7 

When I became a Christian many years ago now, I remember a peace in my heart that has stayed with me through the years and I was blessed to have known the peace that passes all understanding during the difficult challenging events of life. 

My mother was a Christian. She never failed to show me God's Way by her example and love. When she passed away, I take comfort in knowing that I will see her in heaven one day. We will rejoice of God's Love hand-in-hand on that glorious day. 

To learn more about becoming a Christian, please visit Peace With God

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Sunday's Thought!

Photo by Gabriel Crismariu on Unsplash
"Puzzled"
Photo by Gabriel Crismariu on Unsplash

Making Sense of What We Don’t Understand 
by Adrian Rogers, Love With Finding

Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts. Psalm 139:23

A little boy had a jigsaw puzzle. On one side it had a map of the world. On the other, a picture of a man. His mother asked him to try to work it. Before long the little fellow had put the puzzle together. The mother was surprised to find her little son knew so much about geography. “How on earth did you do that?” she asked.

“Oh,” he said, “I worked the other side first. When I got the man right, the world was right.”

How true that is! Let me tell you something, friend—you will never understand this world, you will never understand the universe, until you get the man right, the man Christ Jesus. You must see who Jesus is—that Jesus is Lord. We will never fix this world until we get the man right, the man Jesus Christ.

Are things in your world confusing you these days? Turn to Jesus and trust Him to make sense of what you don’t understand.

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

For more from Love Worth Finding and Pastor Adrian Rogers, please visit www.lwf.org

Devotion used by written permission of Love Worth Finding.

Friday, February 7, 2020

Railroad Photography! Norfolk Southern Heading Through Old Town Manassas

Norfolk Southern Heading Through Old Town Manassas
"Norfolk Southern Heading Through Old Town Manassas"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography
Not too long after I retired, I stopped by the train station in Manassas, VA, where I grew up. It had been years, if not decades, since I last stopped in here. Of course, I had my camera with me. I was like a little kid in a toy or candy shop. And, I was in luck as a train was heading north through town and I was able to capture a train going through town. Of course, I was very excited as I hadn't been around trains in who knows how long.

My wife was smiling as she was seeing a side of me she hadn't seen before. She knew I was happy and that is important to her. This day was a re-igniting of my passion for watching trains.

To view my photography, please visit www.allenpearsonphotography.com.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Sunday, February 2, 2020

Sunday's Thought!

Photo by Ben White on Unsplash
"Man Reading Bible in Field"
Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

Why believing in God won’t save you
by Jack Graham, PowerPoint Ministries

"You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!"
-James 2:19

Once I was seated next to a lady in a waiting room. It was just us two, so I struck up a conversation and asked her if she attended church anywhere. She said she used to, but not anymore. So I shared the Gospel with her, and she told me, “I went to church for years and never once did I hear that! I believed in God but I never knew Jesus.”

That same scenario is being played out today in the lives of so many people. They’re good and faithful “churchgoers,” but through the shortcomings of their church or their own lack of engagement, they’ve missed Jesus. They like the idea of church, but want to keep their spiritual life at an arm’s length.

Let me be clear: Believing in God won’t save you. Today’s verse tells us that even the demons believe, yet they aren’t saved. What saves you is a personal faith in Jesus Christ – that He died on your behalf, rose again from the dead, and by faith in Him you can have eternal life.

If there’s any doubt in your mind today, place your faith fully in Christ. Good works can’t save… Going to church can’t save… Belief in God can’t save… But Jesus will!

BELIEVING IN GOD AND DOING GOOD WORKS WON’T SAVE YOU. SO PLACE YOUR FAITH IN CHRIST ALONE TO FORGIVE YOU OF YOUR SINS!

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, January 31, 2020

Garden Perspectives! Blue Sea Holly Blooms!

Blue Sea Holly Blooms
Blue Sea Holly Blooms

Several years ago, I want to say around 14 years, I had the opportunity to travel through California visiting a few National Parks and a few popular tourist sites. I remember stopping at the place of a huge garden and looking around at so many beautiful flowers and garden art. Unfortunately, I do not remember where I visited and came upon the flower "Blue Sea Holly."

The flower quickly became a favorite of mine because of the blu-ish hue to it especially when grown in mass groupings! I tried to grow several of these flowers in my backyard but the soil, climate, sunlight, and possibly even my dog didn't encourage the flower to grow.

Yes, my dog. Though I find it interesting that he will "avoid" peeing on flowers he sees me plant, sometimes he goes for whatever he sees that's handy. For me, I'm fine with that because my backyard is his area to run and play and dig or whatever. I garden too but with the knowledge that this is his area too. It works really well. I have to be very careful about what I plant too.

If you get a chance, go to your local garden center this spring and look for this plant.

My photography can be viewed at www.allenpearsonphotography.com.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Sunday's Thought! Encouragement from God's Word


"And without faith it is 
impossible to please him, for 
whoever would draw near to
God must believe that he
exists and that he rewards those
who seek him."

- Hebrews 11:6

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Railroad Photography! Old Trestle Pillars

Old Trestle Pillars
"Old Trestle Pillars"
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

A trip to Shepherdstown, WV, on a day that went from cloudy to sunny to partly cloudy to snowing last winter was to visit the James Rumsey Park and Monument and Shenandoah Junction. I am always paying attention to the railroad bridge located south of this trestle pillar which was built to replace this old bridge to carry the trains across the Potomac. So, I created an image of it.

My railroad photography and other works are found at www.allenpearsonphotography.com.

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Sunday's Thought!


Image by Flash Alexander from Pixabay
"Old Barn"
Image by Flash Alexander from Pixabay

How Can You Repay Jesus?
By Adrian Rogers, Love Worth Finding

…whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed.” Romans 3:25

“Propitiation” is a big word that means “satisfaction,” as in payment for a debt. Because God is holy, His anger and justice burn against sin. He has sworn that sin will be punished. There must be a satisfactory payment for sin.

God said, “If I punish man for his sin, man will die and go to hell. On the other hand, if I don’t punish man for his sin, My justice will never be satisfied.”

The solution? God said that He would become our substitute. He would take the sin of mankind upon Himself in agony and blood thus He provided both the righteous judgment upon sin as well as the Substitute who would pay the penalty for sin. This is our sin—your sin, my sin. Jesus, the sinless Son of God, was your stand-in, your substitute.

God’s wrath burned out on the cross when His only Son died as man’s propitiation for sin. And this is love. “In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 John 4:9-10)

Question: What can you bring Jesus today to repay Him for what He has done for you? Answer: Nothing. Nothing you or I could ever do would suffice. But “Love so amazing, so divine, demands my soul, my life, my all.”

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

For more from Love Worth Finding and Pastor Adrian Rogers, please visit www.lwf.org.

Devotion used by written permission of Love Worth Finding.

Friday, January 24, 2020

Railroad Video! Norfolk Southern in Rectortown, VA



In my exploring around Northern Virginia and West Virginia for locations to watch trains going through town, Rectortown, VA has become one of my favorites. The area is hidden away, it seems, from civilization and is really quiet which makes reading and writing much easier than in town! Also, I tend to like the wooded areas near the tracks as it allows me to photograph nature along with the trains.

The town is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Within the town's area, there are 54 historic buildings or sites which are dated back to before the Civil War and the days of the Manassas Gap Railroad. As I drive through the town, I notice the slew of interesting looking buildings but do not see any that are open to the public. Many look like residences more than anything.  According, though, to a website I found, the town is noted for two churches, a school, an Odd Fellows hall, a US Post Office, multiple commercial buildings, several cemeteries, and a number of historic residences. The railroad had been brought through the town by one of the early residents, Mr. Alfred Rector, who had an investment in the railroad and wanted it to come by his property.

The video I am sharing with you is called the "Norfolk Southern in Rectortown, VA" created on the B-Line. When I was growing up, this section of the tracks was not used very much. In 1988, it became a mainline from Manassas to Front Royal. Today, it is very busy with several trains running daily.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Sunday's Thought!

Photo by Brian Jones on Unsplash
"Snowfall!"
Photo: Brian Jones on Unsplash
Yesterday I woke up to find a light snow falling which was supposed to turn to ice and freezing rain before all rain. I couldn't help but notice how beautiful, pure, and white the snow was as it fell. It was so gentle and light, to me, an awesome sight.

As the snow fell, I couldn't help but think about the hymn, "Whiter than Snow,"

"Lord Jesus, I long to be perfectly whole,
I want Thee forever to live in my soul;
Break down every idol, cast out every foe;
Now wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow."

Chorus:
"Whiter than snow; yes, whiter than snow;
Now wash me and I shall be whiter than snow."

"Lord Jesus, let nothing unholy remain,
Apply Thine own blood and extract every stain;
To get this blest cleansing I all things forego;
Now wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow."

"Lord Jesus, look down from Thy throne in the skies,
And help me to make a complete sacrifice;
I give up myself and whatever I know;
Now wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow."

"Lord Jesus, for this I most humbly entreat;
I wait, blessed Lord, at Thy crucified feet;
By faith, for my cleansing I see Thy blood flow;
Now wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow."

"Lord Jesus, Thou seest I patiently wait;
Come now, and within me a new heart create;
To those who have sought Thee Thou never saidst, No;
Now wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow."

Lyrics: James Nicholson
Music: William Gustavus Fischer (1835-1912)

I remember singing the hymn at the end of numerous church services for the invitation to anyone to go forward and accept Christ. At my young age, I didn't completely understand what the hymn was really saying. I mean, how can my sins be washed whiter than snow? However, the Scripture says:

Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord:
though your sins are like scarlet,
    they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red like crimson,
    they shall become like wool."

Isaiah 1:18, (ESV)

Of course, some of it was due to my young age. Though I was never in "deep" trouble or a "bad kid," but, as with any and every human on planet earth, I sinned and made mistakes along the way. How can God wash my sins "Whiter than Snow?" 

Now that I am a bit older, ok- alot older, I have gained some wisdom and understanding about what God does for us and the meaning behind the hymn and what God is saying in the Scripture. Basically, no matter what we have done, where we have done it, why we did it, no matter whatever- God will forgive us and wash our sins away and make us whiter than snow. When Jesus has forgiven us, they are forgiven, they are not brought back up to haunt you or be a problem to you. You are forgiven. And, yes, He forgives and forgets.

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

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, January 15, 2020

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

John 1:15
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

 "The light shines
in the darkness,
and the darkness
has not overcome it.

- John 1:5

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Sunday's Thought!

Happy New Year
(C) Storyblocks, Used by Permission

Well, the New Year has started and we are already going into the second full week of January. Yup! This one 's going to fly by like 2019!

A friend asked if I was making or had made any New Year's Resolutions this year. I replied that I had not because perfection can't be perfected upon so there is no need. If only that were true. But, then life would be boring for me.

The friend went on to share that she read it was better to make smaller resolutions in the New Year toward a larger goal than to always try to tackle more challenging ones all at once. Again, the perfection comment went through my mind but I stopped it before it went out. I got to thinking about this and began to see her point and agree.

Typically, I make several New Year's Resolutions each year and evaluate them at the end of the year. This way, I can tweak them toward making another goal the following year.

A few goals for 2020 is to walk my dog Noah fifty more miles than I did last year, eat healthier, and drink more water. The most important resolution I will make this year is to learn more about God, Jesus, and the Bible. It seems that the more I know, the more I want to know, and you can't know enough about God, Jesus, and the Bible.

Are you a Christian? Have you been wondering if there is life after death? Do you wonder about God, Jesus, and the Bible? Maybe you need to make a New Year's Resolution to follow Jesus. If you would like to learn more about Jesus and the Christian faith, please visit Peace With God.

Friday, January 10, 2020

Railroad Photography! Norfolk Southern Freight Heading North

"Norfolk Southern Freight Heading North"
Art of the Freight Car Series
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

I have been watching trains go through town since I was as young a boy as I can remember. I can remember running through Grandmother's house to the porch down the steps to the fence gate to see the train coming around the bend at the far end of the tracks which went through her town.

As a young boy, this was the fascination or the best excitement for me for the summer. It was something that nothing else on earth could compete with. Unfortunately, as I grew up and through my adult years, I lost track (pun intended) of enjoying the trains. Mostly, because I was working and didn't live near any railroad line. Every once in a while, I would hear a horn off in the distance which I thought was a train and it brought back memories. Being busy sometimes causes you to forget some things too.

After I retired, I find myself having the opportunity to enjoy trains once again. I live near a historic railroad town and seem to have trains coming from both sides of my studio.

In the early morning, I love hearing the train horns in the distance as they began their journey's north or south. I hear them throughout the day but this is the time I hear them most.

I've learned to love the fall and winter seasons as I can hear the trains much better. They almost seem like they are going by the studio.

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Sunday's Thought!

"Plainfield, United States"
Photo by Kent Rebman on Unsplash

One of the least favorite moments of the Christmas season which happens every year not too long after the New Year reigns in. The darkest night of the entire year! Well, not really. It just seems this way because almost everyone has put away their Christmas lights and the dark of the night has returned.

I took mine up a little earlier than I would have liked this year. With New Year's being on Wednesday, many will probably leave theirs up at least until Saturday. I decided to take mine in because it was supposed to start raining on Thursday and continue until sometime on Saturday morning. If I left them out, then I have to let them sit out long enough to dry out. So, convenience's sake, they were taken down on Wednesday.

As the night began to fall, I noticed the dark did seem to be darker than usual. My first thought was "wow, I didn't realize how dark it really gets in the night," This thought brought up some concerns about safety and what was going on out there in the world with all of the darkness.

As the evening went on, I saw the moon and it's a bright light and a few stars in the sky which almost made the darkness seem friendlier and even disappear a bit.

This scene of darkness and light reminds me of how God takes care of us in so many ways. Many times we are facing issues in life that are dark and seem to go on forever. We feel lost and alone as we go through these dark times afraid of what might be around the corner. In dark times, sometimes we feel very lonely even with other people around us. God sent His Son Jesus into this world to help us and carry us through our dark times.

When I look back over my life, I can see dark and sometimes lonely times where God was with me. While I may not have known it at the time, I can see where He was there helping me, preventing a situation or problem from being worse than what it was or by being there during those lonely times.

After I became a Christian, the dark times seemed to disappear as Jesus's Light began working through my life. I remember a friend noticing that I was even nicer than I used to be. Interesting. I felt better about myself and my outlook on life changed to being more positive.

Jesus can do that for anyone who asks. Ask Him to come into your life. To learn more please visit Peace With God.

Friday, January 3, 2020

Railroad Video: NS Locomotives 9440, 3668 Lead Empties through Cassandra Railroad Overlook Park, Lilly, PA



A few months ago, I got to take a week off and "hunt" trains throughout the Altoona, Pennsylvania area. This is a trip I look forward to every year. I started taking them in Spring 2016 which was several months after I retired.

During this trip, I experimented using my new Nikon D3500 to record a few trains. Liking the results, I am sharing them on my YouTube Channel. Please subscribe to my channel so you will receive my new posts as they are produced.  

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Wednesday's Words! Encouragement from God's Word

3 John 1:2
(C) Allen Pearson Photography

"Beloved,
I pray that all may go well with you
and that you may be in good health,
as it goes with your soul."

- 3 John 1:2

Happy New Year!