Wednesday, January 18, 2017

I'm a Runaway Bride

Sometimes I am astounded at the lengths those I love will go to to try to "hide" from me.  Sure, I've been a lousy, controlling, distant, hovering, make ever mistake in the book kind of parent or friend (yes, I recognize many of these traits are contradictory but hey, I've had years of practice on multiple children so I can do that!). But still.  They shouldn't doubt that in my messed up way I love them - always have, always will kind of love. And yet, I watch grown loved ones revert back to the toddler "hide behind the couch and grunt and Mom won't know you're making a mess" kind of thinking - so I am astounded.  Don't they know we know - and yet love them still?  Then here it comes from left field - those smack me in the face lessons - don't I run from the One who loves me - and His is perfect love!?  When I falter, or worse still, choose selfish destructive things over His beautiful and perfect will, I run behind the couch as if He won't see.  Or worse, crawl under the couch convinced He would never want me again. So my prayer for this year is to set the example - grow up, face up, soak up His love. And then reach out with loving arms to the other ones behind the couch.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

It's Hard

It's so hard, O Lord.
So hard not to get discouraged.
So hard not to despair.
So hard to keep my eyes and heart and thoughts fixed on you instead of the hurt, pain and chaos.
So very hard to not wallow in despair when those I love so dearly, have poured my very being into them, are so viciously opposed to the beauty and glory of Your soothing love and mercy.
It's hard not to drown in the guilt of my own selfish failures that feed their lack of understanding of Your perfect forgiveness and grace. It's hard.
And discouraging.
And heart rending, heart breaking, tear filled sorrow at the lack of our love for the Lover of our souls.
Hear our cries , Oh Comforter of sorrows.
Hear our groans oh Healer of bone-deep pains.
Grant us peace, oh Giver of Perfect peace.
Forgive our grievous wickedness and prideful ego.
Hear us, O Lover of our spirit, as we cry, nay, scream out to you in utter despair as the huge ocean of tears for our family, our children, our selves, our nation drown us as we recognize how very, very far we are from Your Holy and perfect will and desires for us to become Your obedient and faithful children.
Oh Lord God how we need you, how we long for Your presence;
how my very marrow of soul aches for Your touch in our lives.
Grant us Your mercy, O Lord, for Your own worthy honor and glory.
For Your own praise. Hear my ache, O Lord Jesus.  

Monday, June 13, 2016


with my Jacob,” I would pray,
“wrestle till the break of Day”;
till he, knowing who Thou art,
tho’ asked, will not let Thee depart;
saying, “I’ll not let Thee free
saving Thou wilt first bless me;”
O God of Jacob, who knew how
to change supplanters then, so now
deal, I pray, with this my son,
though he may limp when Thou art
Ruth Bell Graham, from “Prodigals and Those Who Love Them”

Based on Genesis 32:24–31

Thursday, September 24, 2015

This Wasn't What I Expected

Maybe it's the instant gratification, stay occupied with movies and video games, constant barrage of information, texts, posts, tweets..... or maybe it has always been this way.  Maybe since Adam and Eve men (okay, more women than men) have thought they knew what was coming, what to expect, how life was going to be.  The "Happily Ever After" fairy tale diet doesn't help.  The Photoshop, makeup covering, perfect way to take selfies environment feeds it, too.  Somewhere along the way most of us have come to think that we know what the future will look like, how it will be, what it will hold.  Yes, we make choices in life that have certain consequences, but there are so many things we can't "expect" (aka "control"!).

Recently I was blessed with a "reunion" of some very special Godly women who helped me through some tough times in life.  We shared young life - 14 month pregnancies (well, they felt that long!), sleepless nights with teething babies, potty training accidents and successes, how to teach math to very strong-willed right-brained children, when to participate and when to pull out of sports leagues, co-ops, play groups and churches, how to love on husbands who were sometimes very unlovable and how to forgive ourselves for sometimes being very unlovable wives, too.  Now, as our children approach their thirties and many in the group are grandmothers, we were all a bit shocked to realize that almost nothing went as we "expected".  We were not where we thought we would be at this point in life.

Broken relationships; strained or broken marriages (ours and/or our children's); prodigal children; grandchildren born out of wedlock; sexually, emotionally and physically diseased or dying children were not what we "expected" when we committed our lives, our energy, our love to have a God-fearing home.  And yet, there it was.  And in the center of the realization that nothing, practically nothing, we had planned and worked for had turned out as we had envisioned, there was such a sweetness and amazement that it was OK anyway.  For we shared - and still share even when we go years without being together in person - the hope, the unity, the peace, the love, the joy that only Christ can give to any of our hearts in this broken world.  And oh, the amazing joys and victories and blessings that we had never dreamed had come about, too.  For the sweetest and most beautiful eternal flowers are those unexpected blossoms pushing through this world's broken despair.  So thank you, Lord Jesus, that things are not what we expected.  And thank you for sweet and dear friends to help remind us that it is all about Your Eternal purpose.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Woman of Leisure

Leisure: "Washing dishes, clothes and floors; Grocery shopping with coupons and a budget, cooking with little time and discriminating 'customers'; planning, chauffeuring, cheering, nursing, encouraging, teaching, disciplining, and raising children; and multiple other tasks needed on an hourly basis". See - we ARE women of leisure :) [Note to self: It is all in the perspective!!]

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Remind Me Again....

Remind me again what was so important
that I forgot to send my Mother a birthday card?
Remind me again what was so very pressing
that I didn't have time to call and talk to my Dad one last time?
It's hard to remember what was so significant to my career
that I missed seeing my son hit that home run.
And there must be something wrong with my memory
that the reason laundry and housework made me
miss some very sweet three-year-old giggles.
Is it a genetic defect that doesn't allow me to remember
the reason the payments on the big house and new car
were more important than sitting in a rickety rocker with Granny?
Or why worries over whether I would be in the next layoffs
made me ignore my daughter reaching for my hand when I got home late?
Remind me again of the books on the shelves
that were never read because there were other more "important" things to do.
Remind me of the reasons we ate dinner at different times
so that I could get the promotion... or you could be on the video game longer.
Remind me again why things take priority over people.
Because I keep forgetting.
And the older I get the
more I don't want
to be reminded
of anything
I love.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

What's the big deal about profanity?

Three letter posts, texts, spoken "words" come at us constantly and have become so ingrained in our daily lives most of us do not even think about them.  I refuse to even put their letters here because they make me think the words that go with them.  They are not just innocent letters. Even now, I apologize if the thought of them makes you think those words.  Words matter.  

"Do you not understand that everything that goes into the mouth passes into the stomach, and is eliminated? "But the things that proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and those defile the man. "For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, slanders."  Matt. 17:17-19

Ouch.  I have used, abused, and spewed out words.  As I get older, I realize the intense power of those words.  And I ponder profanity.  My parents had "rules" - don't say this, always say that, etc.  Unfortunately I learned to obey the rules only, and didn't really understand the reason behind the rules.  It is the kind of thinking when I thought that the Ten Commandments were "don't"s and not understanding that they are all about the difference between our sinful nature and God's Holy One, and that only a loving God would give us rules so that we could find truth. 
and love. 
and joy. 
and eternal life.

Profanity - the opposite of sacred.  I don't want to be profane.  Actually, I desire holiness, sacredness, righteousness, Godliness.  That is the sad part about being surrounded by profanity, the sad part that we are not taught the difference between sacred and profane, respect and selfishness, courtesy and rudeness.  Our culture has trampled on the sacred under the banner of "rights" and "freedoms".  I am thankful for the rules my parents set - we were not allowed to say "dang it" or "darn" because they explained it was simply a more "acceptable" way of using a swear word.  They explained less (if at all) about why using the curse words was profane.  It has been only recently that this hard heart of mine has absorbed the full reality that profanity in any sense is the total epitomy of selfishness.  It does not consider the sacred nature of our own minds or hearts, the sacred in others, the sacredness of what our society could be if it was redeemed by the Redeemer of all.  The profanity of others dirties my mind and heart, but also makes me wonder at why I am not more careful with my words, too.  It reminds me that we are all in need of mercy.  
and grace.  
and redemption. 

"Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth;
    keep watch over the door of my lips!"  Psalm 141:3