Thursday, May 30, 2013

My God, My Dresser

Philippians 3:13
English Standard Version (ESV)
13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead,

When I look at this housewife, in heels no less, bringing in her family's frozen laundry, I'm not longing for the good old days.  I'd rather strain forward than backwards, wearing my New Balance shoes and pulling clothes out of my dryer.   It's good of God to have a Bible verse for every occasion, isn't it?  I've been fretting over my continued desire and need for a cell phone, having lost my new one shortly after getting it.   Yes, I spent years without one, as the young man who lives in my house but doesn't want to be blogged about reminded me today, but this feels like a need and not a want.  If I get stuck somewhere I want to be able to call for help, especially now that I've bid goodbye to my young, healthy joints.  I can remember, back in the day, getting stuck on the freeway, and having to crawl over a metal barrier, in a dress and heels,  and down a hill into an industrial area looking for a phone booth.  My guardian angels put in some overtime that day.  God was faithful to me then, and He will continue to be faithful to his anxious daughter without her cell phone security blanket.  I know I shouldn't worry but I don't always do as I ought.  This brings another passage of Scripture to mind.
Matthew 6:25-34
English Standard Version (ESV)
Do Not Be Anxious

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?[a] 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
"Consider The Lilies" - Patty Green

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

He Touched Me

This song has been playing in my head today, "He Touched Me," by the Gaither Vocal Band.  Oh, the joy of the Savior's touch!

Joy of My Father

Romans 8:17-19
New International Version (NIV)
17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.

Present Suffering and Future Glory

18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19 For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed.

Romans 14:11
New International Version (NIV)
11 It is written:

“‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord,
‘every knee will bow before me;
    every tongue will acknowledge God.’”[a]

Yes, there will be a day when I shall bow before my God; but it will be a bow of reverence and honor done out of love for the One who loves me so,  the One who has adopted me as His very own.  I am a child of the true King; and, although I share now in His sufferings, I have the certain hope of sharing in His glory.  We, who know Jesus as Savior, also know the Father and the Spirit.  The veil has been torn.  We will all meet one day face to face.  We are His joy and He is ours.
"Your Joy" - Josh Fox

Monday, May 27, 2013

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Gripped By Love

Romans 14:8
New International Version (NIV)
8 If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

The images of survivors being rescued from the Moore, Oklahoma tornado are still fresh in my mind, especially the one of a mother, standing among the wreckage, cradling her daughter who may have seemed too big for that prior to the disaster.  I wept over the story of the two little girls, best friends, who died clutching each other as the tornado took their precious lives.  I have to believe that God is much like that mother with her daughter and that we're never too big of a burden for Him to carry.  I also have to believe that those two girls were never out of God's hands as well.  I believe in faith that God takes care of his children, even though I may not fully realize this truth this side of Heaven.  We are never lost to Him.

Rheumatoid arthritis has affected my grip, by attacking the joints in my hands.  My hands have weakened and there are some things I just can't hold anymore.  The only thing that I can hold onto for dear life is my Heavenly Father's love for me.  Thankfully it is He who does the holding.  
"One Thing Remains" - Passion

Thursday, May 23, 2013

The Mothers From The Greatest Generation

Psalm 85:10
English Standard Version (ESV)
10 Steadfast love and faithfulness meet;
    righteousness and peace kiss each other.

I've been thinking about my mom who married the handsome soldier returned from the war.  She's been going through her old photographs to label the names and places for the generations to follow.  It's been a little more than three years now since the love of her life marched through Heaven's gates.    One of 14 children, my dad used to say of her, "I got the best one of the bunch!"  So, he did.  This Memorial Day I want to remember the mothers of the greatest generation.
"Back When We Were Beautiful" - Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

My God In the Ruins

"The Ruins" James Tissot
I watch the news and find myself distressed over seeing once again parents rushing to find their children.  The destruction left by the tornado in Oklahoma graphically plays across my television set.   Precious lives were lost.  A town is in torn apart.  Still I am comforted by the sure knowledge that Jesus is there among the ruins, weeping with those who weep.   I will weep with them also.

"No Storms Come" - the innocence mission

Monday, May 20, 2013

I Know These Things To Be True...

...because the Bible tells me so.  It's so important to discern God's truths from Satan's lies, so that when the winds blow, we don't fall down.  Pray for the suffering in Oklahoma.
I like this song.
"His Truth Is Still True" - Chris August

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Made It!

Hebrews 10:25
King James Version (KJV)
25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

Little Bear was there too.

Patsy Cline Duet with Slim Wilson - "Let's Go To Church"

Convincing Myself... go to early service.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

My God's Hands and Feet

1 Peter 5:6-7
New International Version (NIV)
6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Revelation 21:4
King James Version (KJV)
4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

The pain of rheumatoid arthritis makes me very aware of my hands and feet, actually most of my joints.  I've been to a couple of family gatherings recently.  I couldn't help but notice my sister, who also has rheumatoid arthritis, walk like I walk.  So that's what I look like!  We both have that rheumatoid arthritis shuffle.  
On another day I sat across the table from another family member who is very ill.  His eyes were weeping from allergies, but his hands were too weak to wipe away his own tears.  It made me think of what a caring, intimate and loving act it is to wipe away someone's tears, and that is what my God promises He will do.  
I pray that I will be the hands and feet of Jesus here on earth as it will be in Heaven.  
"Your Hands" - JJ Heller

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Family Bibles

Psalm 103:17
New International Version (NIV)
17 But from everlasting to everlasting
    the Lord’s love is with those who fear him,
    and his righteousness with their children’s children—
Proverbs 1:8-9
New International Version (NIV)
8 Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction
    and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.
9 They are a garland to grace your head
    and a chain to adorn your neck.
2 Timothy 2:15
English Standard Version (ESV)
15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved,[a] a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.

As I write this, my iPad is charging because I'll be carrying it to church tomorrow as my Bible.  Yes, times have changed.  The young man who lives in our house but doesn't want to be blogged about has the Bible on his smart phone and electronic tablet.  My husband, however, still carries and reads the Bible old style.  Actually all three of us have print Bibles that we cherish and read but the new-fangled versions are nice too.  I like that they're easy to hold and I can enlarge the print with a swipe of my fingers, but I might miss the sound of pages turning during church; and I have to wonder if all those sword drills of my youth were for naught, since I can now electronically summon a verse at will.  Times may change but God's word never does.  I'm thankful for my parents who impressed on me the need to learn it.  It's the truth that has set me free.  

Such are my meandering thoughts  because I enjoyed listening to Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash sing "The Family Bible" on Youtube this morning.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Even Jesus Had a Mom

Luke 1:46-55
English Standard Version (ESV)
Mary's Song of Praise: The Magnificat

46 And Mary said,

“My soul magnifies the Lord,
47     and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.
    For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
49 for he who is mighty has done great things for me,
    and holy is his name.
50 And his mercy is for those who fear him
    from generation to generation.
51 He has shown strength with his arm;
    he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts;
52 he has brought down the mighty from their thrones
    and exalted those of humble estate;
53 he has filled the hungry with good things,
    and the rich he has sent away empty.
54 He has helped his servant Israel,
    in remembrance of his mercy,
55 as he spoke to our fathers,
    to Abraham and to his offspring forever.”

I could be labeled a fundamental, evangelical Christian, a bit shy of liturgy and incense, or any other church thing that might threaten my belief in salvation through grace alone, Jesus being my saving grace.  I like bringing out Mary for Christmas and Easter, because she was there for her Son's birth and death, but   I give little thought to her the rest of the year.  I'm being convicted to remember her this Mother's Day because no mother wants to be neglected on that day, and neither would Mary.  I suspect even Jesus would have been in the card store searching for the right card for His mom if such things existed during His time on earth.  I think that in loving her He would have also honored her.  
It couldn't have been easy being Mary but she was blessed indeed. 

"Sing Like Mary Sang" - Ryan Delmore

Thursday, May 9, 2013

My God I Adore

Philippians 3:20
New International Version (NIV)
20 But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ,

1 Chronicles 29:11-14
New International Version (NIV)
11 Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power
    and the glory and the majesty and the splendor,
    for everything in heaven and earth is yours.
Yours, Lord, is the kingdom;
    you are exalted as head over all.
12 Wealth and honor come from you;
    you are the ruler of all things.
In your hands are strength and power
    to exalt and give strength to all.
13 Now, our God, we give you thanks,
    and praise your glorious name.
14 “But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.

I was born in the land of the free and the home of the brave.  Why I think that means I'm free and brave, I don't know, because I'm really not either; but it's my birthright and I'm happy to claim it.  While I'm thankful for my country of birth, but I'm even more thankful for my citizenship in heaven.    I'm wildly, happily held captive by grace, a child who will never leave her Father's house. It's truly the best place to be. 
Come, let us adore Him.

"Oh, Lovely One (feat. Marie Barnett) - Vineyard Worship

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

My God In the Details

Psalm 139:17-18
New International Version (NIV)
17 How precious to me are your thoughts,[a] God!
    How vast is the sum of them!
18 Were I to count them,
    they would outnumber the grains of sand—
    when I awake, I am still with you.

This seashell has me marveling at the intricate care God took with his creation that one small shell on one of the multitude of shores surrounding his deep and vast oceans would be so beautiful.  What an amazing God!  How much more care was given in the creation of one of his children?  It's hard to get my mind around it!  Thankfully I don't have to count the grains of sand.  God already knows their number, as He knows each one of us.  
Give Him glory for the great and small things He has done.

"All of Creation" - Mercy Me

Monday, May 6, 2013

My God, My Treasure

Farm child - Dorthea Lange
Her family was resettled on the Bosque Farms project, New Mexico 

Matthew 6:20-21
New International Version (NIV)
20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

This child from America's Dust Bowl migration, perched on a trunk of her family's meager possessions, remind me that the things I hold so dear matter little in the light of eternity.   I hope that she lived a good life bringing honor to the generations that proceeded her in the picture hanging on her wall.  I hope that she prospered and had her own happy home one day.  Most of all I hope that she found the joy and peace that comes from knowing Jesus as her Savior.    
Sometimes our hands have to be emptied so that Jesus can fill them.   We can then lift up those unencumbered hands in praise for the One who is our all in all, our true treasure.  He is enough. I pray for joy in your journey and the blessed assurance that this world is not our home.
"This World is Not My Home" - Blue Highway

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Prayer, My Last Song

Ephesians 6:18
New International Version (NIV)
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

I don't spend enough time in prayer.   I was considering uploading "Sweet Hour of Prayer" to Youtube but wasn't sure if I wanted to be under conviction.  No one yet has done a hymn for "Sweet Minute Here and Sweet Minute There."  So in its place I put together a slide show for a Julie Miller prayer song done by Vineyard Worship, "Last Song."  It's a less than two minute song, much like my prayer life.  Even so, I love this song.
May prayer be my life's swan song.  May I go out with a prayer on my lips.  

"Last Song (feat. Ryan Delmore) [Live] - Vineyard Worship

May your peace be anchor in stormy tide,
May your hope run like a river that'll never run dry,
May your burdens grow light, may your worries subside,
This is my prayer for you.
May your soul grow deep, may your joy run wild,
May your heart know the face of mercy has smiled,
May your faith come to let you believe like a child,
This is my prayer for you.
This is my prayer for you.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

My God of Every Season

Psalm 5:11-12
New International Version (NIV)
11 But let all who take refuge in you be glad;
    let them ever sing for joy.
Spread your protection over them,
    that those who love your name may rejoice in you.
12 Surely, Lord, you bless the righteous;
    you surround them with your favor as with a shield.

Psalm 51:8
New American Standard Bible (NASB)
8 [a]Make me to hear joy and gladness,
Let the bones which You have broken rejoice.

I'll never frolic like this again, if I ever did, on this side of eternity, because my rheumatic joints will rebel; but I can still get a excited about a beautiful sunny day in this often gray, northwest corner of the country.  The sunshine following the rain is always a reason to celebrate, as it should be in all aspects of our lives.  We will go through seasons in life and not all of them pleasant, but the light of God has pierced the darkness.  Rejoice and be glad.  We will all yet dance.
"I Will Dance" - Phil Driscoll

Thursday, May 2, 2013

My Mother's Shoes

I was out with my mom last night and finding myself thankful for another chance to walk in her shoes.  Ever since accepting Christ as a young wife and mother she has faithfully followed her Savior, teaching me how to follow Him as well.   She isn't perfect but she does keep walking, and that's probably all our Savior desires from us.  
Until we walk the golden streets, Mom, enjoy the journey.

"Walk Over God's Heaven" - Alison Krauss

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

My God Who Leads the Battle

1 Corinthians 16:13
English Standard Version (ESV)
13 Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.

I'd like to believe that I'd follow my God into battle anywhere and at any time.  I'd like to believe that I'm right with Him on the battlefield even as I long for comfort and security, even if I'm not His bravest soldier.  Most battles we fight are not seen by men and no earthly glory accompanies them, but that's okay, because our Savior knows.  He's leading the way.  
Saddle up and ride.  

"We Will Ride" - Lindell Cooley & Brownsville