Posts Tagged ‘life’

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God in the Details

November 25, 2015

I bought a car today. I bought it because I need a vehicle in Texas. I need a car in Texas because I am moving there. I am moving to Dallas because my job morphed into a new one. My new job is practically my dream job, and this new job is in Dallas. I am less than a year from being retirement eligible, so my cool job and a move to Texas is kind of a no-brainer.

But not without its challenges. It means quite some time living halfway across the country from my best friend and husband (one in the same). It means leaving a GREAT church, my incredible daughter, great friends and the best neighborhood ever. It means a lot of flying home to stay connected with the aforementioned. It means moving my Mom, who lives with us, to another place.

But it’s not forever. And I have an amazing peace about the whole thing. Because I trust that Jesus has my future and my now in His hands. He knows what He is doing and I am totally confident in the knowns and unknowns in every step of this journey, because He is faithful and true, full of grace and mercy, and all loving, all the the time. Count on it.

So I bought this car today, and after two hours of the you-know-what in the dealership finance office, I drove away and noticed…  the car stereo was tuned to K-Love (a Christian radio station) playing a familiar song. What??  God smiling, God taking care of me, taking care of the little details. Making it easy, making it feasible, reminding me He is in the every-day of my life. Today, tomorrow, for the next many months… This song came to mind: You Are for Me 

I serve a great God — the same God Who created the Universe, this earth, and everyone one of us upon it. And this Jesus, Who gave everything to make me (and you) His (when we follow), also bends to remind me each and every day that He is attentive and kind and gracious. None of which I expect, and certainly don’t deserve…

Today I feel like a daughter of the King. He reigns over heaven and earth; Let Him reign in my heart each day like He does today.

 

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Trying Hard to Keep the Balance!

May 6, 2011

My blogging has slowed to once or twice a week as I wrap up my first week back to work full-time since my surgery. While recovering I made a commitment to keep better balance in my life and not neglect the important things or relegate them to the back burner. I love my job but it is not my life. It takes more hours of my week than any other activity, but it is not my priority.

Books, blogs, Bible studies and buddies all seem to be emphasizing that now is the time to press in harder and not sit back. For me that means following hard after God, getting into His word in an even deeper way, seeking His wisdom in every area of my life (including the physical aspects!) and sustaining and growing relationships with others. This isn’t so easy when you work a minimum of eight hours a day but it IS possible. Here are some things I am trying:

  1. Getting up earlier to get more time with God and start the day right.
  2. Taking little breaks during the day to refocus on what’s important. Sometimes this is as simple as checking in on an inspirational Web site or blog, reviewing a memory verse, taking a quick walk and meditating, or writing a quick note of encouragement to a friend.
  3. Walking each day (a walking buddy really helps here!)
  4. Wrapping the day up with a short journal entry which  provides refocus and reflection on the day and sets the stage for tomorrow.

What do you do to keep an even keel and not neglect the important things in the busy-ness of your day?

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Sticks and Stones

December 27, 2010

 

“Sticks and stones will break by bones, but words will never hurt me.”

A nice childhood rhyme; An injurious falsehood.

Words never hurt? I think most of us would agree that just isn’t true. Sometimes, they hurt worse. Bones heal. Hurtful words, especially those spoken by those closest to us, those most cherished, take much longer to heal. For some, those wounds never heal.

Experientially I can speak of this. I can recite many instances where words hurt far worse than physical infliction and took far longer to heal. I have close friends who can say the same. Some have not yet healed.

But don’t take my word for it, hear what the Authority has to say on this subject:

  • “The words of the reckless pierce like swords.”
  • “A perverse tongue crushes the spirit.”
  • “The tongue has the power of life and death.”
  • “No human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.”
  • “A crowd of unfaithful people…make ready their tongue like a bow, to shoot lies.”
  • “Their tongue is a deadly arrow; it speaks deceitfully. With their mouths they all speak cordially to their neighbors, but in their hearts they set traps for them.”
  • “Like a north wind that brings unexpected rain is a sly tongue—which provokes a horrified look.”
  • “I am in the midst of lions; I am forced to dwell among ravenous beasts—men whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords.”
  • “They make their tongues as sharp as a serpent’s; the poison of vipers is on their lips.”
  • “Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. No human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.”

That: A small sampling regarding the power of the tongue; the power of “mere” words from one human being spoken to another. A WEAPON.

I have heard, very recently, a good friend tell of a “joke” about him that, when told in a crowd of intimates, is merrily received. It is oft repeated. And my friend laughs, hollowly. Yet this “joke” is hurtful, far more than any of the tellers could know. Yet it goes on. And the wound grows.

Because of this, I see why God instructs His creation (us humans) against “coarse joking” and perverse speech:

  • “From the mouth of the righteous comes the fruit of wisdom, but a perverse tongue will be silenced.”
  • “The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit.”
  • “I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech.”

Perhaps some of the world’s ills, certainly some of the ills in our local communities and social circles, could be cured by the simple discipline of keeping our mouths shut.

Maybe it’s not easy because we are SO proud. AND selfish. And it’s “all about me.”  I am as guilty as the next: “Go along to get along.” But when it happens, I feel a stab—that stab of a knife thrown but ricocheted. Perhaps I am becoming more sensitive. Praise God.

But what would be the harm if we ALL tried not saying anything disparaging against another? What could change? In families, in politics, in church, in schools, in national and international conflict? I am just asking. It’s a question that shouldn’t be ignored.

A “Snark Free Week.” I’ll lobby for that.

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Waiting for the Light

November 20, 2010

 

The light makes all the difference. You can’t manufacture it or control it. Only God can do that. There are things totally missed or unappreciated in darkness, mist, haze or shadow. These same things, in the right light, are noticed; they glow, stand out, give us pause, makes us stop and wonder.

Wait for the light, it’s worth it.

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Jenny

November 19, 2010

 

She was my best friend. Pretty sure she was the best friend I’ve ever had. I am older now and making new and deeper friendships, and had she lived, and had we reconnected, we would certainly be the epitomy of earthly friendship.

But let me explain.

We met at 19. Two young, immature, (THIN), fun girls, crazy for Jesus and crazy for each other. WE-JUST-CLICKED. From day-one. It didn’t matter that the controlling church in which we met tried to rule our lives and the limits of our friendship, somehow we found a way around and through that. It was a weird and wonderful time.

Then she moved. Away. To California. And left me there in Hawaii. I pretended to be happy for her. But I was devastated. She was pregnant, I had an infant. She had to go; I had to stay. Serving in the military is like that. Hard. We were in the Air Force, they were in the Army. (She was with me when my daughter was born. And I mean WITH ME. Friends do that.)

So fast forward a couple of years. My husband and I leave the military and take a job with an airline company in the San Francisco Bay Area, near Jenny and her family. It’s a GOD THING. We reconnect. Our kids grow up together, are homeschooled together, in and out of each other’s cars and houses.  We attend the same church. We are once again inseparable.

Then the unthinkable happens. People who you think are “good” are not. Leaders in the church twist things; manipulate. It’s not right, hopefully it doesn’t occur often, but it happens. And it happened to us. It happened to me and it was me.

Here’s the great regret in it all: As close as we were, we let the “authority” of the church dictate the way in which we responded (or more correctly, did not respond) to each other. She believed one thing and I believed another and neither one of us felt like we could just pick up the phone and say, “WTH?!?!?”  Now: I wish I would have. I SO WISH I WOULD HAVE!

I missed out.  On a lot. Not only the high school years of our daughters together, the maturing of ourselves as sisters in Christ and aging physically, but the final knife: Her illness and early passing, of which I had no part. After she moved on to a better place I heard later that some old “friends” were “there” for her in her last weeks, but she wished they weren’t; I heard that she had a different perspective on things. Rumors only to me now: I have to wait to see her in a few years to really know.

But the weeks I was out of town while she was suffering, while her memorial service was held, were very conflicting for me. I wanted to see her while she was alive. I wanted to honor her after her passing. But so many “others” were in the way. I hadn’t yet fully known or understood what caused the canyon between us.

Then came FaceBook. And some mutual friends with whom I reconnected, who set me straight on more than a myriad of things; more things than (to this day) I can fathom. It is so sad that we believe things that aren’t true. It is so sad that we assume things that aren’t so. It is so sad that we don’t ask, seek, probe, learn, love. I lost because I did not do these things. Neither of us did these things.

Yet one thing I know: I will see Jenny again. We will likely hold each other tight, but not so tight that we cannot dance with delight. And all the while we will laugh: The kind of laughter that rarely happens between friends but often happened between us. I remember it well and I hope to repeat it often in the eternal years to come and the friendship ultimately sustained because God is GOOD and He knows we should have always been friends. And, I really think He liked the sound of our laughter.

Jenny: I would say that I love you more than you could ever know, but you now know more than I ever could. So, I will just say that I love you, and I am sorry.

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The Step You’re On

May 29, 2010

 

Test the rock in the middle of the stream before you ask it to hold your weight.

Choose wisely.

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Sunset of a Life

February 17, 2010

Beside the swollen river
Naked willows bend to drink.
A loon sounds in the distance
As I sit alone and think.

Many seasons I have spent here
On this little patch of land;
Praying for a myriad,
Pouring water on these hands.

It is the end of winter,
And so, too, perhaps, for me.
But as it is with seasons
Brand new life is yet to be.

If I should fall asleep here,
Never more to wake again;
‘Tis only this old body,
Not the soul that is within.

And when I meet my Maker
I pray He will say to me:
“Well done, My faithful servant,
Home now, for eternity!”