Friday, April 23, 2010


I took this picture three days ago, but just uploaded it to look at it today. What a surprising insight it gives us into the process of blooming. Full bloom doesn't happen all at once, but each small burst of color is a major triumph.

I will heal their waywardness
and love them freely
for my anger has turned away from them.

I will be like the dew to Israel;
he will blossom like a lily.
Like a cedar of Lebanon
he will send down his roots;
his young shoots will grow.

His splendor will be like that of an olive tree,
his fragrance like a cedar of Lebanon.

Men will again dwell in his shade.
He will flourish like the grain.
He will blossom like a vine,
and his fame will be like the wine from Lebanon.

Hosea 14:4-7

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Spring is beautiful

Life is messy. Sometimes it can really get you down. Sometimes you want to collar people and shake them until some sense gets into their heads. Other times, you want to just curl up in a ball in a dark place, a dark and warm place, and sleep forever.

But God makes beauty from ashes. God makes flowers bloom after winter. God, and only God, brings life from death. Jesus is our hope, our only hope, and in Him we need to abide.

"In that day the Lord Almighty will be a glorious crown, a beautiful wreath for the remnant of His people. He will be a spirit of justice to him who sits in judgment, a source of strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate."
~Isaiah 28:5-6

"The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because God has anointed me to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives and release for the prisoners,
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
and provide for those who grieve in Zion--
to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting for the Lord for the display of His splendor."
~Isaiah 61:1-3

Monday, April 5, 2010

Signs of life

It got up to 88 degrees this past weekend. It was a truly glorious Resurrection Sunday.

My daffodils are blooming!

My lilac bush is budding!

God is renewing the earth once again.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A gift

So today I am not feeling great. I don't want to go on and on about it, but it's important to understand that I am feeling incredibly weak today. Also, I have a lot to do, so coupled together those factors lead to sense of overwhelmedness.

We took the van to Ford & Bryant early this morning and I came home and went back to bed.

When I woke up, I still felt crummy and could not figure out what to do, whether to shower or eat breakfast first, or what to eat for breakfast.

Finally I decided that I would like green tea and raisin bran, but I didn't think we had any raisin bran. I thought Jonathan had eaten it all. Jonathan prefers cereal that sinks.

Maybe this is flaky and shallow and stupid, but I prayed. I told God that I certainly wouldn't try to test His love for me by basing it on whether we had raisin bran; I know He loves me, and He doesn't have to give me raisin bran to prove it. But, I told Him, in the event that there did turn out to be some raisin bran, it would be a very comforting confirmation of Your love for me.

There was raisin bran.

I feel a little odd about it, but I wanted to give Him praise for that.

Friday, February 12, 2010

What would happen....

Just think about it. Just close your eyes and try to imagine.... what would happen on this earth if each one of us became willing to extend more grace to others than we expected to get for ourselves?

Monday, February 1, 2010

A verse for all of us

I want to share a verse that is precious to me. It may be a comfort to many people. I need to share it with my children and ask them to memorize it as they head into their futures.

This is Shannon and Laura riding in Shannon's car. It is symbolic of the journey of life, a microcosm of the paths they travel to arrive at their God-ordained destiny. They are not sure where they are headed, but they seem to be enjoying the trip. Well, Shannon does. Laura still has a lot of unknowns.

This is David at his piano. Music brings him great joy. However, he does not see it as a future career path. He is not sure what he will be, who he will become, under the grace of God, but he is thankful for music and the release it affords.

Jonathan is not serious about much. I'm not sure he is convinced that he's really going to grow up. When he was little, I remember urging the other children to beseech God on his behalf and ask that he would live until he was 5. I don't know why I chose 5 as the age to pray for? Did I think he would be set by then, solid, full of health and sensibility? He has called on the name of the Lord for salvation, so in that sense he is set. In many other senses, he has a way to go.

So here is the verse... for me, for them, for everyone...

"The Lord will work out His plans for my life-- for Your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. Don't abandon me, for You made me." Psalm 138:8 (NLT)

Friday, January 1, 2010

Just wanted to share this

For the word of the Lord is right and true;
He is faithful in all He does.

The Lord loves righteousness and justice;
the earth is full of His unfailing love.

By the word of the Lord were the heavens made,
their starry host by the breath of His mouth.
He gathers the waters of the sea into jars;
He puts the deep into storehouses.

Let all the earth fear the Lord;
let all the people of the world revere Him.
For He spoke and it came to be;
He commanded and it stood firm.

The Lord foils the plans of the nations;
He thwarts the purposes of the peoples.
But the plans of the Lord stand firm forever,
the purposes of His heart through all generations.

Psalm 33:4-11

I needed that today. I need to remember that God is in control. He made it all, and He oversees it all.

I've been to the ocean (hence the photo above). There is not much that makes me think of the infinite greatness of God the way the vast ocean does. In a way, the ocean scares me. It is so big, and so bleak. Many have met their deaths in its great waves.

God made the ocean. Not only did He make it, He has ultimate power over it. He can stir up a storm, and He can calm it down again. He brings in the tides and sends them out. And if He wanted to, he could suck up all the water from all of earth's oceans into a "jar", and that would be that. He must have some mighty big jars in heaven!

This is only a tiny glimpse of the God I serve, the God who created the vast universe, filled with solar systems of sizes beyond the limits of my imagination. He also created all of nature and science: atoms, molecules, sub-atomic parts like nuclei and protons and neutrons. He designed an individual DNA pattern for every living creature. He even worked things out so that every single snowflake that falls is different from every other snowflake.

It's no wonder He could part the Red Sea so the Israelites could cross on dry land, no wonder that He saved them from their Egyptian enemies whom He buried under a deluge of sea water as soon as His own were all safe. It was a mighty miracle for them, but it was child's play to Him. It was easy. Nothing is hard for God.

Nothing is hard for God, and nothing is scary. He cradles the whole universe in His hands, and in Him all things hold together.

The Lord foils the plans of the nations;
He thwarts the purposes of the peoples.
But the plans of the Lord stand firm forever,
the purposes of His heart through all generations.
Psalm 33:10-11