Monthly Archives: February 2018

Friday…<3

Happy Friday!

We got home late Wednesday and yesterday was my day with the band of brothers and Princess Caroline…so…needless to say I am tapped out in the brain this morning.

I will give a huge shoutout to all the young moms and dads out there because … have mercy…what you do is E.X.H.A.U.S.T.I.N.G.

And…mind-numbingly repetitive…

and thankless…

and frustrating.

But you are raising up decent little human beings and providing for their needs while training them to make good choices.

You might think…

as I did yesterday whilst holding a baby on my hip as I prepared dinner and wished I had a third hand to wipe the constantly dripping noise…meanwhile answering Emmett’s same question for the ten zillionth time and pulling Joel out of the pantry …in between telling Graham how many minutes were left on the timer for his reading homework…every thirty seconds…

that you are losing your mind.

However I can tell you…

you will look back on all of this one day and know in your heart…

it was just a long string of Best. Days. Ever.

And all of us out here on the other side say a big huge THANK YOU for everything you do.

It all matters and we love you for the care you give your little ones.

You will make it.

All of you.

So just keep plugging away and take up every offer of help that comes down the pike…you deserve it.

<3

The Journey to Easter 2018 begins <3

Good morning! I hope you each had a sweet Valentine’s Day although for America, our hearts are heavy this morning with the news of yet another school shooting.

Our prayers are with all those who woke up this morning to the reality of this devastating act and also we pray for the family and friends of the shooter and the shame and guilt they will surely encounter as their lives have drastically changed. And we pray for him as well, because we are commanded to do so.

We pray for first responders and friends and family of all involved, for teachers and staff at the school and for the moms and dads and little ones who hugged extra hard this morning at the bus stop.

It is unthinkable and yet our news feeds are peppered daily with so much violence and hatred and cruelty and corruption.

This morning I am continuing my reading in the portion of the the Chronological Bible that covers the Laws and Regulations and such from portions of Deuteronomy, Leviticus and Numbers.

Having these all grouped together in this translation is helpful but still rather overwhelming.

And as long as I have been in Christ and His Church and as God has taught me of His heart in so many ways that bring me to trust that He is always good and kind and right and righteous…still my American born, post-modern laced mind cringes as I read the various laws.

I hear the voices of our culture’s talking heads in the back of my mind and I struggle with the methods of justice that I am reading through regarding slaves and aliens and offenses against the poor and women and I think of the outcry’s of political leaders and different special interest groups that would rise up against these passages and attempt to judge God as being unfair and oppressive.

But it strikes me this morning instead….how the laws really point to how evil we are.

The laws and the regulations given to Moses and the people of Israel are not really about God’s character but about how we must deal with our own sin nature. And what a myriad of ways there are that we choose to sin.

It is not God who created the issues that we must now decide how to discipline, correct, punish or gain restitution – it is our own problem of sinful bent that we refuse to accept as part of the fallen world.

We want to blame God for the fact that we choose to go our own way.

The human nature is one that is flawed by choice.

And God has provided a way to redeem our sorry selves from our selves.

Yesterday was not just Valentine’s Day, you know.

Yesterday we began the portion of our faith journey for 2018 that we call Lent.

Russ and I were touched by a newscaster on national network last night who gave her reports with the black mark of an ashen cross on her forehead.

A very visual reminder as she shared that she had gone at some point during the day to be reminded that she lives redeemed by the Cross of Jesus Christ. By His death and resurrection.

Each story she reported on, with the burned ashes of a palm branch from last year’s triumphal entry celebration at her church blotched across her artfully made up face, reminded us that we had no right to pass judgment on anyone.

For all have sinned and all have fallen short..but One.

And so we, as people of the Cross, begin our journey toward the celebration of Easter on the calendar this year, while we live every day celebrating the truth that He is Risen.

He is Risen indeed.

 

 

 

Happy Valentine’s Day <3

Wishing you a sincerely happy and sweet day of hearts.

Consider this your Valentine from me…like I picked out one of those perforated little cards just for you and put it in one of those thin white envelopes with barely enough glue to stick it shut.

Imagine I wrote your name on it and taped a heart lollipop to it and stuck it in the construction paper envelope you decorated on Monday and taped to your desk.

I hope your smiling remembering simpler times when we did those things <3

And I hope your day is full of all kinds of little surprises that remind you how much you are loved.

Remember today …

Love is…

Patient and kind

Not jealous….never envies

It doesn’t boast or act proudly

It is not haughty or selfish or rude

Love never demands its own way

It is not irritable or touchy

It doesn’t hold grudges

It hardly even notices when others do it wrong

It is never happy about an injustice but…

it rejoices when the truth wins out

If you love someone you will be loyal to that one no matter the cost.

You will always believe in him or her…

always expect the best of him or her…

always stand your ground defending him or her.

1 Corinthians 13: 4-7.   based on The Living Bible

Something to shoot for isn’t it?

God bless you all…hugs all around and may the Lord help us to love each other well <3

 

Just checking in <3

We are currently….

That’s right.

Russ had a work thing and I got to tag along.

It has been restful…

for me anyway.

Which is why I never showed up yesterday because I ended up walking outside a lot and napping inside a lot.

I did have lunch and true to my animal magnetism I had a visitor ….

Who apparently thinks “SHOOOOO!!!!! GET AWAY FROM ME!!!” means “Hey little fella…wanna come sit right beside me while I eat?”

So later today I am going to take him for a walk around the premises….

Sure hope nothing happens to him.

Other than that we are missing home…

and our people.

Hope you have a blessed Tuesday <3

 

TGIF…and that’s a wrap <3

They say the Christian walk is a marathon not a sprint and if you have hung with me through this series, I am hearing a rousing AMEN!! coming through the atmosphere.

I have called you to go deeper still into the wounds and the healing.

It’s a common theme out there, I have noticed …must be a lot of hurting people who are desiring to heal well.

I just got a devotion in my email this past week that had this quote from Andy Stanley about grace and how it relates to our topic Deep Healing….

Grace.    

It’s what I crave most when my guilt is exposed. The very thing I’m hesitant to extend when I’m confronted with the guilt of others — especially when their guilt has robbed me of something I consider valuable.   Faithgateway.com    The Story of Grace    Andy Stanley             Feb. 6, 2017

It’s what we have been talking about, isn’t it?

Forgiveness..receiving mercy and grace…extending mercy and grace…the cycle that we work through as God heals us down in the depths of our pain and loss.

We can trust Him when we can’t trust others or even ourselves.

I want to close this series with a beautiful quote I got from A. W. Tozer’s book Tozer on the Almighty God.

He uses a quote from Rev. Dr. Samuel Rutherford (1600-1661) who would cry out in “serious and painful trials”…

“Praise God for the hammer, the file and the furnace”

Tozer expounds on these for the devotionals that cover October 14, 15 and 16 in this book.

He speaks of how the hammer is a useful tool, but the nail must view it as harsh and cruel.

Strike after strife falls upon the nail as forceful blows drive it deeper into the surface.

He describes the nail’s view of the hammer to be “…an opponent, a brutal, merciless enemy who lives to pound it into submission, to beat it down out of sight and clinch it into place.”

He acknowledges that while that is an apt description of the hammer….

“The nail forgets that both it and the hammer are the servants of the same workman. Let the nail remember that the hammer is held by the workman and all resentment toward it will disappear. The carpenter decides whose head shall be beaten next and what hammer shall be used in the beating. That is his sovereign right. When the nail has surrendered to the will of the workman and has gotten a little glimpse of his benign plans for its future it will yield to the hammer without complaint.”

Harsh language, and it goes without saying…but I WILL say it…this is not saying if someone is being physically or emotionally abused they must submit to the abuser!

This is saying that life//other’s sinful choices/our own errors in judgment will bring about times when we feel beat up…defeated…crushed.

And our first inclination will be to curse the circumstances and fight back or give up or give in to our human natures and the world’s systems of dealing with pain.

But as children of the Most High God…there is a better way.

Part of our inheritance is the gift of being one of His own and entitles us to surrender to the Creator who made us and sustains us in the MIDST of it all.

Our loving Father  is well aware of the pain we are enduring and yes, could have stopped the source, but for some reason unknown to us…He has allowed it.

And to acknowledge this is to comply with the hammer because we know it is simply the servant of the Master…as are we <3

And so we lift up to Him our brokenness and our sorrows, our grief and our pain, our sense of loss and our loss of joy…to God, who is Sovereign over us, over them, over yesterday, today and tomorrow.

To ask Him to show us how to move toward healing…and to be obedient to His directions as we simultaneously kneel before Him, lean on Him and yield to Him.

It has been a special blessing for me to walk through some of my stuff with you these past few days.

You all make wonderful travel companions on the Journey…

Have a blessed weekend and I’ll see you on Monday <3