The really sad part about dismissing the Bible

So yesterday a certain, soon-to-be five year old, had his last day of preschool.

IMG_1930

And while he may have had a little trouble remembering to follow directions…

and felt he didn’t need a nap even though his mommy and his Lola voted  yes…

IMG_1942

last days need to be celebrated and we are people of grace.

And we learned grace by receiving GRACE.

Life is hard…

IMG_1840

We have questions…

IMG_1841

and often we feel alone.

People, even and especially Christian people, will let us down.

And all of that is found in the pages of God’s Word….the whole blessed story…and I think of the words of a song I learned as a child…

Jesus LOVES me…this I know…

For the Bible TELLS me so…

Every word of God’s Word points to His love for us…

photo credit Rachel Maxwell
photo credit Rachel Maxwell

So when I hear the mocking…

and the discrediting…

and the condescension..

that the wisdom of this age has to offer…

I weep for the loss of anyone who would dismiss the story of His Redeeming LOVE <3

photo credit: my very own Russ Reimer <3
photo credit: my very own Russ Reimer <3

Jesus loves US…this we know…for the Bible tells us so.

Be encouraged today as you share the story of His Redeeming LOVE

as we…

Journey Onward <3

Take me out to the ballgame…

Last Saturday we enjoyed a beautiful day at the Cardinal game in St. Louis.

IMG_1829

It was one of those bonus days where the first 30,000 people got a pullover.

We were downtown for lunch anyway so decided to hop in line about 45 minutes before the gates opened, grab our shirts and then do some sight-seeing.

The line we chose was fairly short and gated from the sidewalk by a plastic fence.

This is where we met Rodney, the most diligent ballpark employee we have encountered in all the years of attending games at Busch Stadium.

IMG_4477

As we stood in our line, many a hapless group of sports fans would wander up through the neatly formed lines working their way up what they thought was a thoroughfare, only to be hailed by Rodney.

He would call out to them and ask if they were just passing through and when they nodded yes, he would make an opening in the gate and wave them out to the sidewalk.

He would then urge them to remember the rules if they come back to another game so he wouldn’t have to fuss at them.

IMG_1906

Then there were the brave and clueless who were on the other side of the gate and dared to attempt to move the barricade themselves and join the lines that had had already formed.

These were greeted by a more stern Rodney, who would tell them he would have let them in if they had asked, but now they needed to go all the way to the end and get in the line that was forming down the way.

IMG_1849

He did this tirelessly and with a steady demeanor that never escalated into anything beyond:

  • correcting those in error
  • apologizing if he seemed mean
  • explaining it wasn’t fair to all of us who had been standing in line for others to cut in
  • shaking his head sadly and expressing his desire that all the gatekeepers would do their job correctly at every checkpoint around the stadium

At one point, a lady in shorts and a Cardinal t-shirt, with a purse over her shoulder and fan beads around her neck, took up Rodney’s position.

Rodney must have deputized her because she began to open the gate for the right people and usher the wanderers out while Rodney stepped away to help someone with ticket issues.

When I told her she was doing a good job, she said she was happy to help him out.

Apparently she only comes to the area he is working because he looks out for those who have been waiting in line and runs a tight ship.

IMG_1853

I don’t know if Rodney is a believer but I would bet my free, and rather cheaply constructed, new XL Cardinal pullover that he is.

He was diligent but showed grace.

He was firm but kind.

And he is consistent in his efforts, week in and week out as evidenced by his reputation.

And isn’t that what a believer in the workplace is supposed to look like.

Whatever your job is today, do it with integrity…diligence…kindness…patience…honor.

You never know who is watching.

IMG_1936

Your work ethic may be your loudest testimony    <3

Well ouch….

IMG_4261

If you didn’t know us back in 2003, we gained the care of my mom, dad and aunt in one fell swoop.

My mom had completely collapsed from caring for dad, who was deep into Alzheimer, and my aunt, who was deep into dementia.

There is a difference.

Believe me.

We learned a lot…but today’s little lesson is about how we need to deal with our emotional JUNK…

because we can stuff it down for years but let me tell you…

when the brain does a nosedive…

all the issues we thought we “dealt with” surface.

And the shrapnel ….

IMG_7193

hits the innocent and it isn’t pretty.

One of the recurring stories my aunt shared with us could most likely be quoted verbatim by our children to this day.

It involved an incident that had happened some forty years prior in which my mom and dad were driving away from the curb in front of my grandma’s house.

Apparently my mother was wearing a fur stole purchased by her husband. As the car pulled away, she turned slightly toward the house and waved over the shoulder of this luxurious garment.

And that moment was etched in my dear aunt’s mind as the epitome of my mother’s spoiled and selfish ways.

Now please hear me…both my aunt and my  mom were godly women who loved the Lord and had plenty of both strengths and shortcomings to accompany what their walk looked like.

They also loved each other deeply and there was great evidence of kindness extended on both sides.

But that incident had dug a little pit in my aunt…

my aunt who had remained home to care for aging parents while my mom married and had children…

my aunt who, in her right mind, knew that both mom and she had walked through their fair share of ups and downs on the path life took them…

my aunt who, in reality, would have chosen her life over mom’s in a heartbeat…

carried that pain with her all through the years from the afternoon that her baby sister drove off with a wave and left her feeling left out.

Ocean Shores WA and believe me, about 5 miles east of this is bright sunshine....

As our children could all tell you, the story ended each time with Lizzie shaking her head and saying with great disgust….”Your mom. She HAS to be FIRST!”

So this morning as I went to write a lengthy lament in my journal about some hurt feelings I am experiencing, imagine my surprise at what poured from my pen.

As I documented my “feelings” to the Lord on paper about a recurring struggle I have, I asked Him to help me sort through the levels.

I wish He answered all my prayers this quickly and efficiently…because my very next thought was this…

“Probably the root of all of this is my own insecurity and need to be #1”.

Hence the title of today’s post…

because…

ouch.

So from there my journaling moved to a dismissal of all the venting I had planned to do, and we dealt with those two issues in ME.

As far as insecurity:

I am Your child. Not Your only child – but Your only child like me. You made me unique and You called me out of darkness. You fill me with Your Spirit to be Your hands and feet right where I am … with Your voice…to reach those You send my way today. You do this for everyone who loves You and is called according to Your purpose. 

As far as the felt need to be #1:

You are #1. No one else can have that spot. Not me. Not anyone. When I put myself or anyone else as even remotely TRYING to be #1, I am practicing idolatry which is a hateful thing to You. 

IMG_9266

And then I do believe the Lord laughed with Joy as my eyes fell on the pages of the Bible I had randomly opened next to my notebook…

James 4…with the Italicized heading…

Pride promotes strife

followed by a section entitled…

Humility cures worldliness

If you think God doesn’t have a sense of humor to go along with His grace, you really need to spend more time with Him.

So this morning I am so thankful for the One who made me … knows me…called me…to walk so intimately and patiently WITH me as I….along with all of YOU…yes, as we…

IMG_9258

Journey Onward <3

And this is why we have the category…”Musings of a Blonde Brain”

IMG_1878

I added the category “Musings of a Blonde Brain” early on in this Journey for the simple reason that some days, the thoughts I have cannot be described any other way.

Today is one of those days…

because honestly….

much of the stuff going on out there in the world is just surreal to me.

IMG_1876

Take for example the snippet of an interview that I caught last night…

where a big name anchor on a major news program was doing a video interview with someone who happens to be a reality show personality.

The newscaster was grilling the fellow about his political views.

And I am kind of wondering how this is news.

IMG_1879

Then throw in the part where the interview-ee (is that a word? Don’t care…I can use all kinds of made up words when I’m musing….) refuses to cooperate with the political dynamite of questions posed and instead focuses on how what really matters is sharing the Gospel and bringing people to know Christ.

Which got interrupted rather abruptly with a lengthy explanation of how they didn’t have time to go into that because, you understand…you know…TV and all…we have only so much time…blah blah blah….

and I’m thinking how interesting that we don’t have time to hear about people’s lives being changed by coming to know Christ as Savior and LORD…

IMG_1875

which in REALITY…

is a whole lot more important than anything else I can think of.

Again I say, don’t get involved in foolish arguments which only upset people and make them angry. God’s people must not be quarrelsome; they must be gentle, patient teachers of those who are wrong.     1 Timothy 2:23-24 TLB

 

Hello MoNdAy <3

So this guy ….

IMG_1833

gave me a wonderful Mother’s Day treat…

and we got to spend the day with…

IMG_1807

and while I do have a short thought to share to start your week, here are a few of my favorite pictures…

IMG_1819

taken AFTER the obligatory middle child photobomb….

IMG_1818

Then there was this one….

IMG_1821

And last…John did not disappoint us…he ordered the most unusual item on the menu…The Truck Stop….

IMG_1826

and yes…it definitely earned its name.

And yes…he finished it.

Also…for those of you who are detail oriented..

yes, I had a wardrobe change and updated to a much cooler (and I mean in the temperature and fashion sense….) Cardinal shirt…

IMG_1830

So all in all …

Best. Day. Ever.

And here is the thought to share:

In church on Sunday I was completely distracted by a new mom who had her teeny tiny little one all snuggly swaddled and tied right to her with one of those long scarf wraps.

And I couldn’t help but think about how Jesus wept over the people of Jerusalem when he entered the city on what we now call Palm Sunday.

Oh Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city who kills her prophets and stones all those God sends to her! How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen gathers her chicks beneath her wings, but you wouldn’t let me.   Matthew 23:37 TLB

There are other references where God describes His love for us as the tender holding and caring of an infant by his mother.

So as I stood there enveloped in the praise music, I prayed for us to sense His arms holding us…

to feel securely wrapped tight against His chest, just like that wee little one across the aisle.

To know, in the depths of our being, His strong arms firmly pressed against our backs; supporting us.

His face, bent close to ours, whispering words of encouragement and love and hope.

Let us not be like those who stubbornly refused…

IMG_1416

but instead let us be people who forsake stubbornness and pride.

Let us be children who willingly surrender completely to His Love <3

God bless you this Monday.

Oh how I pray you will know His kindness and grace and mercy expressed in ways you can understand TODAY   <3