All posts by janetcassidy

Feeling Gloomy? (OGW, 052)

Do you ever feeling like you are living in a vacuum, where you are “walking in darkness” and gloom is casting a shadow over you?

In today’s podcast I talk about Chapter 8-9 in the Old Testament Book of Isaiah which describes what happens to all of that darkness and gloom with the appearance of Jesus Christ.

I hope you will visit me at for a little encouragement.  Don’t forget to subscribe and share with a friend!

Have a blessed day in God’s Word!

Janet Cassidy

Our Common Language (OGW, 051)

As I was writing out my Christmas cards this year, I was saddened by some of the people that are no longer with us.

Flipping through the pages I see the address of an old friend from high school who died this year.  Her name has been in my address book for years, but she passed away without our ever being able to reconnect.

The names and addresses of beloved family members that I hold close to my heart, including special aunts and uncles, as well as long ago neighbors, bring back sacred memories as I turn each page.

While I keep current the addresses of several people on my phone today, our address book reads like a history book.  It speaks of moves, deaths and friends that have somehow slipped away.

Why is it that we stay close with some people, but others have disappeared from our lives?  Is it simply a matter of losing touch, or do we grow apart as we grow up, and our life—and interests—change?

This makes me think of a situation recently where I was talking with someone who was not steeped in faith-related topics.  I felt limited in being able to converse with them because we didn’t share that common body of interest in religion or a familiar language of faith.

Like scientists and mathematicians who share a language which connects them, the same is true in religious circles as well.  Since I connect with so many of my friends and acquaintances through this common language of faith, when it is missing, it is noticeable.

It’s good to be aware of this so that words can be clarified.  Our inclination should not be to avoid challenging conversations, but to find ways to communicate more effectively with one another.

In today’s Opening God’s Word, we don’t have to work very hard at all to recognize a common theme that binds us all together.  I invite you to turn to the First Letter of John Chapter 4 as you listen to my podcast so that you, too, will discover the one unifying language God offers us.

Janet Cassidy

Change, Who Me? (OGW, 050)

Today’s reading follows both the Baptism of Jesus (which we will celebrate January 12th) and the temptation of Jesus by the devil in the desert.

In the Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 4, Jesus learns that John the Baptist has been arrested so Jesus goes to Galilee.  He has left Nazareth and gone to live in Capernaum “by the sea.”

Here’s what I want to focus on:  Jesus takes up the words of John the Baptist when he says, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Of course, the kingdom is at hand due to the presence of Jesus as he is speaking the words, as well as his presence with us today, but what does that message mean for us today?

While listening to the latest episode of Opening God’s Word, let those words of John and Jesus sink in.  We are always wondering what we can DO to make a difference in this world, and here we have Jesus himself telling us!

Are we ready to repent of our sins and the sins of the world?  Just imagine how doing so would change the way we relate to each other and how we act!

I hope you will share this with a friend who might need a little encouragement today.

Have a blessed day in God’s Word!

Janet Cassidy

New Beginnings (OGW, 049)

My reflection for today’s episode of Opening God’s Word gets its inspiration from the scripture reading for today—the prologue of the Gospel of John.

We’re talking about beginnings!

As you contemplate the past year and the one to come, I hope you will also be inspired by Psalm 96 to sing a new song to the Lord!

Have a blessed day in God’s Word!

Janet Cassidy

Do Not Love the World (OGW, 048)

Oh my!  Is today’s reading from the First Letter of John really telling me I cannot love the world?

Am I not allowed to love beautiful sunsets and sandy beaches?

And what about my family? My family is in the world.  Am I not supposed to love them either?

In today’s episode of Opening God’s Word I clarify this passage by putting it into perspective as I consider the “enticements” this letter warns against and the importance of doing God’s will.

After you have listened to this episode, I would like you to do two things.  If you have not already done so, please subscribe.  Secondly, please pray about who in your life might be struggling with worldliness and encourage them to listen to this episode, or better yet, discuss today’s passage with them!

I hope you have a blessed day in God’s Word!

Janet Cassidy

Speaking Up (0GW, 047)

Merry Christmas!

Are you afraid to speak up when you find yourself in a conversation with someone about faith?

Do you feel that you don’t know enough?

Are you afraid that you will look rather stupid?

Are you concerned you might get into an argument?

Do not be afraid!

In today’s episode of Opening God’s Word I talk about the Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 10, and how to find the courage to speak up!

Please be sure to share this episode with a friend.  Today’s topic is of concern to many of us would-be disciples.

Have a blessed day in God’s Word!

Janet Cassidy

Living in Exile, (OGW, 046)

In today’s episode of Opening God’s Word I talk about the hymn O Come O Come Emmanuel and the idea that we are living in exile from God!

I hope this will give you a little “food for thought” as we inch our way ever closer to Christmas!

Have a blessed day in God’s Word!

Janet Cassidy

Uh oh ~ What are You Doing? (OGW, 045)

What will God find you doing when he comes again?

That’s the question I explore today as we reflect on last Sunday’s reading from the Letter of James.

I hope you will give this some serious thought because it can have a great impact on how we set our priorities and even the choices we make.

Don’t forget to subscribe and share with a friend!

I hope you have a blessed day in God’s Word.

Janet Cassidy

Four Words from the Angel (OGW, 044)

In today’s gospel from Luke, Chapter 1, we hear four life-giving words from the Angel Gabriel.  Words that we can cling to.

Gabriel is very busy in the readings this week.  In today’s reading he tells Zechariah that he and his wife Elizabeth are going to have a baby in their old age.

As you might expect, this is quite surprising to Zechariah, but even more surprising is what happens to Zechariah after he gets the news!

In today’s episode of Opening God’s Word you can find some encouragement from the angel that will help you in your own life. Take his four words to heart.

I encourage you not to be distracted this week by all of the shopping and the never-ending list of things you have to do.  Take today’s episode as a way to re-focus on the big event coming our way!

Please share this with a friend who might be feeling burned out trying to prepare for Christmas.  These readings are a great little retreat for us.

I hope you have a blessed day in God’s Word!

Janet Cassidy

Listen Carefully! (OGW, 043, Mt. 1)

Joseph had to listen carefully to the angel in his dream as Mary was betrothed to him and it was discovered that she was pregnant!

What was Joseph to do?

I’ll go over this passage today in the latest episode of Opening God’s Word and talk about Joseph’s response to Mary’s pregnancy.

As we move through this 3rd week of Advent, I hope you are paying very close attention and anticipating the miraculous event coming next week – the birth of Christ!

Don’t let yourself be distracted!  Don’t let these days of Advent distract you from what is most important – the coming of the Savior of the World!

I hope you will share this podcast with a friend or family member who needs a bit of encouragement.  Many people get very disheartened during these last few days before Christmas as it is so easy to take our eyes off Christ.

I hope you enjoy these remaining days of Advent!

Janet Cassidy