Tuesday, July 31, 2012

This Is Why He Waits

The sun. Like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion, he comes out of his tent in the early morning. Adorned for his bride, he comes.

The birds begin their days work.

Dew glistens the ground. Mist came up from the earth and watered the ground.

Man. Formed from the dust of the ground.

I whisper. Words should not disturb the sacredness of this morning altar.

"Thank you for another day."

"Where is your God?", they say.

Seconds to minutes. Minutes to hours. Hours to days. Days to months. Months to years. Still, He does not come.

He waits. He tarries. For this.

"The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance."
(2 Peter 3: 9)

Somewhere in a jungle of forest or concrete. Somewhere in a mansion or a thatch roof shack.

Somewhere on a Walled Street. Somewhere in a food line.

Somewhere next door. Somewhere on the other side of the world.



Someone will confess with their mouth. Someone will believe in their heart.

He waits. He tarries. For this.

For this one.

From afar off He sees. The dead come to life. The lost found.

Today may be the day.

For the one you have been praying for. 

The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth. 

The ninety-nine are left.

The angels rejoice.

The Son. Like a Bridegroom coming forth from His pavilion, He comes out of His tent in the early morning.

Adorned for His bride, He comes.

He looks down from the banister of Heaven.

He waits. He tarries. For this.

He wouldn't have missed this one for the world.


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Not A Blog Post

This is not a blog post.

This is an I'm setting the timer for 10 minutes, and writing, because I'm so done that I can't even begin to write an organized anything.

Ready. Set. Go.

I was going to write a blog post for my weekly "Tuesdays with Jesus" about how we have three basic necessities in life. Food. Clothing. Shelter. The bare necessities. I even looked up the lyrics to the song from the movie, The Jungle Book.

I wanted to compare these to Jesus and our all-sufficiency in Him. 

Here are my notes:

Food: He is the Bread of Life. 

Clothing: He clothes us in garments of salvation and places a robe of righteousness over us.

Shelter: He is our Shelter, our Refuge, our Hiding Place, and our Safety.

But after cleaning up the house, balancing the checkbook, picking up a prescription, buying a few groceries and putting them away, climbing the Mt. Sinai known as the load of towels that have accumulated for ONLY 3 days, and putting them away, I am done. So done.

I won't quote the Scripture verses that go with my thoughts above. Maybe you can look them up. No Hebrew or Greek transliteration today. 

No thoughts deeper than the wondering if it's going to rain. 

Nothing more profound than how I love the way my backyard looks at this time of day.

Whispering thank yous for a roof and clean water, clothes, and the ability to buy groceries for my family.

Purposeful thanksgiving. 

PurposeFULL thanksgiving.

She was pushing a grocery cart down the busy street on my way home. All her belongings within. Folks say our neighborhood is going down the drain. Suburbia isn't so polished anymore. I think she's a reminder from God.

But for His grace.

If I lost everything, would He be enough? 

Would His bread fill me?

Would salvation and righteousness hang well on me?

Would the shadow of His wings be the shade that gives me respite from the heat of my difficulties?

I'd like to say yes. 

I'd like to believe I would. Believe I could.



Tuesday, July 17, 2012


Dear Lord ~~ Today I want to start anew. 

Dear Lord ~~ I promise you that today I will. 

Dear Lord ~~ Forgive me. Starting today, I will start again.

How many times have you said those words or some variation of them?

I think I may have started over today, more times than there are today's on the calendar.

I don't know ... We're convicted. We glance back at yesterday and clearly see where we went wrong. 

An angry word. Impatience with the kids. Gossip. A less than God-honoring post or conversation on Facebook.

We didn't take God seriously.

We weren't serious-enough of a Christian.

Today we want to start afresh.

We promise that starting today.

"Here I am again, Lord. I know I've said it before. But today I really mean it!"

Is this wrong? Is it pointless?

I reckon it is not.

I reckon it is just as Jesus would have it. Watch this...

God's mercies are new every morning ~~ Lamentations 3: 23

Indeed, the "right time" is now. Today is the day of salvation ~~ 2 Corinthians 6:2

Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! ~~ Isaiah 43: 18-19

Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. ~~ Matthew 6: 34

In between the past and tomorrow lies TODAY.

The past is called the past because it's passed.
Frankly tomorrow may never come.
We are left with today.

To live.
To laugh.
To love.
To do our best.
To open our eyes and have ears to hear.
To do all for His glory and the display of His splendor.
To follow.

Wherever He may lead.

I reckon that's all together Biblical.


Thursday, July 12, 2012

It's A Small, Small World

 In this season of heat, storms, and power outages, it seemed good to pull this one out of the archives, as it's truth remains the same. 

In typical Michigan fashion, we had one of our good old thunderstorms yesterday afternoon. Chuck and I had just finished taking dinner to some church friends, going to Starbucks, (I can't go anywhere without stopping at Starbucks), and were pulling up in the driveway, when the wind started whipping and blowing leaves, dust, and tree limbs. I thought I saw Miss Gulch go riding by on her bike!

My son Kyle, and his two friends were just cleaning up in the garage from "band practice". All of a sudden we heard a revolting noise from one of their amps. It was quite funny to see three grown boys jump as high as they did. Needless to say, that noise meant that we just lost power.

It was only about 6pm, so it was still light outside, and our supper was still hot on the stove. Not so bad, so far, right? Our oldest daughter, Michelle, told us that we could spend some time at her house if we wanted to have AC and TV. So off we went to pass a couple of hours. Still not so bad.

We got home around 9pm. That's when darkness started to move in. And so did the humidity.

Between calls to Detroit Edison, Chuck and I sat at the kitchen table by candlelight, listening to the updates on the radio and talking. At one point my groom said, "This could almost be romantic if it wasn't so sticky." Gotta love him! Romantic? My legs were sticking to my chair and God forbid I would cross them, without them sticking to each other. Any fleshly contact with another human being at that moment would render us permanently stuck.

Even though I remained quite stoic, I felt sorry for myself.

I felt sorry for my dog Sylli, who I was convinced had been rendered blind by the power outage. My son Brian told me she has night vision. What?!

I even started to feel sorry for my hair. What was I going to do tomorrow if the power didn't come back? I could already feel the frizzies taking hold, and after I slept, oh my gosh....people would run from fright!! No blow dryer. No hair straightener.

What was happening to the food in the fridge? Brian said the milk had already gone bad.

I was so cold/sticky (there really is such a thing when the air temp is lower, but the humidity is high. Don't quote me but I say it's true). Anyway, I was so cold/sticky that it felt like I had bugs crawling around on my body. I know they weren't, but it sure did feel like it.

By about 11:30, I decided to pack it all in and go to bed. I'd sleep, and hopefully power would be restored in the middle of the night. As I got ready for bed I started to think about what I had been feeling. And right then and there I was CONVICTED!

I was reminded of the people that I pray for in Myanmar, who just experienced a devastating cyclone. I pray that they have found my little "Thuzar" that I support through World Vision.

I remembered the children in the food lines in Africa, who are literally starving to death, and being fed one bowl of soup each day by the mission of LIFE and James and Betty Robison.

I remembered the filthy, disease contaminated water that Ugandan children are drinking everyday. The very thing that they need to sustain life, is literally killing them.

I have been asking God to enlarge my heart, so that I might fall in love with His children who are all the way on the other side of the world. Those who are suffering and those who have followed the Lord's call to go and serve. He's been showing me that life is about so much more than what's in my own back yard. There's a great big world out there. And there are great big needs.

I've been reading stories about people who are persecuted and sometimes martyred for their faith. Yes, there ARE modern day martyrs.

There are horrors and sights and smells and pain that our pampered American eyes and ears and hearts cannot even comprehend.

God is faithful. He has been answering my prayer and breaking my heart for what breaks His. And giving me PERSPECTIVE!

I may not have had electricity last night, but my friends across the world won't have it today, or tomorrow, or the next day either.

My water is clean and clear. Theirs is dark and slimy and least of all ... deadly!

Above my head is a roof, and I am surrounded by brick and mortar. My friends across the world will be lucky if the straw huts in their village will hold through a storm. If they even have a hut.

I felt like I had bugs crawling on my skin...my friends across the world really do!

I have hope for a change when Detroit Edison turns my power back on.  

Tomorrow, my friends across the world will have no hope of things being any better this day than it was the day before.

I can replace my milk and put it back in my refrigerator.

My precious little friends in Africa will stand in lines that stretch as far as the eye can see, to get one bowl of life-giving soup, in order to make it through another day.

Our power was restored around 3AM.

Tonight...somewhere else in the world, no one will turn the power on. 

Dusk will turn to complete darkness for yet another night. 

The mosquitoes will hover. 

Hungry babies will cry.

The water will make them sick.

Mothers will hold their dying children in their arms and pray that someone will come to help. 

Lord, hear their prayer!!

Somehow at this moment, the world seems a whole lot smaller.

 "...standing firm in your faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings." (1 Peter 5: 9)

You can also help here:  Holden Uganda


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

What If?

What if?

You had a problem.

What if?

You had two, sure fire ways in mind, that could solve that problem.

What if?

You prayed for one, or both of those sure fire ways, to come to pass.

Each and every day.

Multiple times.

Every day.

What if?


What if?

God knows about your problem.

What if?

He has a sure fire way to solve your problem.

What if?

He hears your prayer.

Each and every day.

Multiple times.

Every day.

What if?

What if God said...

"I have a plan to solve your problem.

You insist that you know better than I.

You won't wait for me to put the pieces together.

So, I will give to you.

Just as you have asked of  Me."

What if?

You just missed the most amazing answer to your problem.

What if?

Gods thoughts are not your thoughts.

And God's ways are not your ways. (Isaiah 55: 8)

What if?

God is able to do exceedingly, abundantly, above all that you could ever ask or think. (Ephesians 3:20)

What if?

God has a plan to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you a hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11) 

What if?

You surrendered.

You took your hands off.

You stopped telling God how to do His job.

What if?

You believed God.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

My Friend David

I spent the long winter months doing quite an extensive and detailed study of the life of David. You know the David I'm referring to. David Bar Jesse. Shepherd turned king.

I sat in Jesse's tent on the day they brought David from sheep herding, and declared that, unlike his more qualified brothers, he was the one who would be anointed King over Israel.

I watched him wait for many years, hiding with him in the caves, as he ran from a madman.

I watched him fall in love. I watched as he fathered children. I was hiding in the shadows when he stepped out on the rooftop in the cool of the evening, instead of being miles away with his troops. I caught my breath and wanted to scream, "No, David! Not you!", when he took Bathsheba, another man's wife.

I watched him scheme and plot to have that man killed in battle. I shook my head and held it in my hands when he was exposed. I knew that judgment wasn't far behind.

I watched my friend lose a child and grieve deeply. I watched him get back up and go on. I watched as another child betrayed him and sent him running back to the caves. I watched as he lost that grown man-child as well. "Oh, Absalom...my Absalom!", he cried. I wept.

I laughed with my friend. I danced through the streets with him, amazed at the God we serve. We had ourselves one undignified celebration before the Lord.  

I cried with my friend. I cheered him on. I was so disappointed when he fell.

I grieved his death. I wholeheartedly cried my eyes out and didn't get over it for days. His story was that profound. His story was that personal to me. His story my story.  

My friend David taught me that all I need to slay a giant is a sling and five smooth stones.

I can do all things

God so loved the world 

In the Name of Jesus

He taught me that a just God forgives every time, but will also meet out consequences for my actions.

He taught me that friends and family can betray me and that my soul can trust in God alone.  

But the most wonderful thing that my friend David taught me, more smooth stones to slay any giant.
Pour out your heart to


My friend David taught me how to pray. He taught me that I can pour out my heart to God. I mean REALLY pour out my heart! I don't have to follow a program or a plan. I don't have to use fancy words. I can tell God EVERYTHING, just the way I'm feeling it! 

I can tell on people and believe me, I do. I can tell my God that I'm angry, furious, beside myself. I can groan and grunt and shake my fist before Him. I can cry. I can use words or I can just stand and look up and when words fail me, He hears the unspoken. 

I can tell Him when I don't understand Him. I can tell Him when it's just not fair. I can tell Him that I'm scared, terrified! I can use the word "HATE". David even prayed these things called "imprecations", which were zealous prayers, calling down hardship and threats, and even death, over his enemies. I can't say that I'm totally comfortable with that one, but David truly poured out his heart. He taught me that I can too. 

How do I know that it's completely okay to pour out my heart like that? To be one hundred percent transparent and honest with God? Because my friend David did and God called him,

"A man after My own heart"

From sheep pens to palaces....

From killing lions and bears to slaying giants....

From the heights of intense love to the depths of depression and sorrow...

...my friend David, taught me that it's okay to be human. 

Because of the One called Great, the Son of the Most High, given the throne of his father David, who will reign over the house of Jacob forever; His kingdom will never end. (Luke 1: 32-33) 

Thank you David. Thank you, my dear friend. 


Monday, July 09, 2012

Simply Simplify

It's on the TV. It's all over the Internet. Simplify. Go back. Folk loving vintage everything. From food, to home decor, to raising kids, to how we dress...everyone wants to go back. Back to some long ago era when things were, well, simpler.

I'm trying not to over think all of this. It's just been on my radar lately, and I've been seeking to make some sense of it. Some of the highest volume of readers on the blogs today, especially among young Christian women, are visiting sites that encourage old fashioned, home spun, good ole family living. Don't get me wrong. Please. There is much to be said for old fashioned, home spun, and good ole everything. But...

Are we not satisfied with life as we know it in 2012? Are we missing something? Is planet Earth just spinning way too fast for us? If we aren't living as if we were still on the prairie, are we living wrong?

While technology has without a doubt made some things simpler, it has also been the motor driving a world moving at such breakneck speed that we can't keep up anymore. We are out of breath from striving and running.

The more modern has freed us, the more we have become slaves to modern. 

How can it be that in a world of inventions that were invented to make things simpler, we live so far from simple?  Personally, I don't think the answer is in trying to go back.

The Bible says that God, "from one man made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and He determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live." (Acts 17: 26)

We are living in the exact place, the exact time, and surrounded by the exact things that God intended for us. We are on this planet, now, for such a time as this. No use trying to go back. We will be of greatest use when we fulfill our purpose in the here and now.

There is something that is so personal to me that I can't even share it at this time, but it has shown me that this IS the exact generation that I was to be born, to fulfill something that only I could do. My forefathers couldn't do it. It would be too late for my children. God chose me out of a long family line to be the one. He doesn't want me trying to go back. He doesn't want me worried about tomorrow. He wants me to be present in the here and now. With this husband, with these children, with these grandchildren, in this house, on this street, in this city, in this country. Now.   

When I determine to go back to basics, I will go back to my Bible and the Word of God.

When I determine to go back to basics, I will heed the words of my Christ in Revelation 2: 4:

"You have forsaken your first love."  

While my God may be complex and seemingly hard to understand, He is really quite simple. He is quite the simplifier of all things. 

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and Love your neighbor as yourself." (Deut. 6:5/Lev. 19:18)

Today...right where you are.

Your thoughts?