Pages

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Prayer


Ever have an instance that catches your breath? Reading this prayer did that. Then I prayed it.

Eternal Father of my soul, let my first thought today be of You, let my first impulse be to worship You, let my first speech be Your name, let my first action be to kneel before You in prayer~

For Your perfect wisdom and perfect goodness:

For the love with which You love mankind:

For the love with which You love me:

For the great and mysterious opportunity of my life:

For the indwelling of your Spirit in my heart:

For the sevenfold gifts of your Spirit:

I praise and worship You, O Lord.

Yet let me not, when this morning prayer is said, think my worship ended and spend the day in forgetfulness of You. Rather from these moments of quietness let light go forth, and joy, and power, that will remain with me through all the hours of the day;

Keeping me chaste in thought:

Keeping me temperate and truthful in speech:

Keeping me faithful and diligent in my work:

Keeping me humble in my estimation of myself:

Keeping me honorable and generous in my dealings with others:

Keeping me loyal to every hallowed memory of the past:

Keeping me mindful of my eternal destiny as a child of Yours.

Through Jesus Christ my Lord, Amen.

(Taken from Richard Foster’s Devotional Classics, pp. 126-127.)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Unforgettable

When it all comes down to it, none of us wants to be forgettable. Hannah went to visit our friends in Bend and help them with their youngin's. She loves babies and so we thought it would be a great opportunity for her to get some babysitting experience. She is a natural. However, after only being gone for hardly 24 hours she said quite sadly to me on the phone, "You have probably already forgotten all about me". Seriously? I said. NO WAY.......and of course went on to encourage her and let her know how proud we were of her and how much we loved her. Despite the fact that I knew it was her 11 almost 12 year old drama speaking.
Frankly, I was stunned she would say that. And didn't think about it again until I heard today about a dear women and friend of ours who went to be with the Lord yesterday. She was a wonderful woman of God and we served with her husband in ministry in Colorado. Was she forgettable? Never. Always a beautiful smile. Always a word to encourage. I remember her warmly and am thankful for the time our paths crossed.
And like most of us when someone we love passes on, I pondered upon myself. Was I forgettable? Am I living an unforgettable life? We want to be known. For people to remember. Not too much different from my Hannah.
Do I have what it takes to be the unforgettable? Oh God, I so desire to be ALL that you have created me to be......and embrace ALL of my life. Each day. Each moment.

I love how the Message paraphrases 1 Corinthians 1:7-9 ~
Just think—you don't need a thing, you've got it all! All God's gifts are right in front of you as you wait expectantly for our Master Jesus to arrive on the scene for the Finale. And not only that, but God himself is right alongside to keep you steady and on track until things are all wrapped up by Jesus. God, who got you started in this spiritual adventure, shares with us the life of his Son and our Master Jesus. He will never give up on you.
Never forget that.......

What are you doing to be unforgettable?

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Strange

I a desperately trying to live fully right where I am. The rooms are still strange here, even with new color. Windows open to a fresh terrain, different climate. Nothing is familiar. I kept thinking that once we get our furniture "set" it will feel more like home. Guess it doesn't happen as quickly as I anticipated.
Making such a change uproots not only your furniture, the kids schools, your surroundings, but it uproots you. And I thought all the undoing was the 9 months waiting on direction.

For I am about to do something new.
See, I have already begun! Do you not see it?
I will make a pathway through the wilderness.
I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.
~Isa. 43:19

I have clung on to this scripture. This promise of the new. Here we are in a strange land- it is new alright. I didn't expect the strange feelings. The loneliness. The what now? God. Unnerving really these emotions of the strange. I am refusing to give into the feelings though. Okay, so I feel a bit "uprooted", and lonely. I am standing firm on my believe that the new has begun. And then it hit me this morning.......I feel strange because OF the new. It has been awhile. After wallowing in the wasteland for so long, the new would seem strange.
So strange is good.
I need to be patient as I navigate through this new territory and allow myself to adjust to the new "Here". To capture the day, be fully present....even in the strange.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Inspired

After my post yesterday, I ventured on to reading some of my favorite authors/bloggers. Read this from Donald Miller-
"We don’t normally face our fears willingly. Usually, God has to woo us into the desert. We are either chasing love or some other desire, and we find ourselves in the midst of a situation in which we have very little control. And when we lose control, we go into a mild form of trauma. But the good news is the greatest stories are lived in the desert. The great lives are lived in the places we most fear. If we fear being rejected, the great story has us standing at the door with flowers in our hands, if we fear losing love, the great stories have us letting that person go rather than clinging to them. If we fear taking a chance on a dream, the great stories have us quitting our jobs."
uuummmm...... greatest stories are lived in the desert. Seeing as we are coming out of a desert time, I can attest to some stories. Great? Not sure yet. I do know that I learned ALOT about myself and my relationship with God and what it means to really live..
Fear is a paralyzer. Stealer of joy. Fear takes away life....moments that were meant to be captured, enjoyed, absorbed. I lament over the stolen from myself, my life. No more to live in fear.
I am now living a better story. And I am not at all sure where this chapter is taking me but I read this quote today and it captured what I have been contemplating these last moments~
"I will not die an unlived life. I will not live in fear of falling or catching fire. I choose to inhabit my days, to allow my living to open me, to make me less afraid, more accessible, to loosen my heart until it becomes a wing, a torch, a promise. I choose to risk my significance; to live so that which comes to me as seed goes to the next as blossom and that which comes to me as blossom, goes on as fruit."
-Dawna Markova

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Bend

Never been to Bend before......at least not the town here in Oregon. Last weekend we got the opportunity to make the 2.5 hour gorgeous journey through the Cascades to Bend. My best friend along with another recent grad, just opened Hope Rising- a counseling center and the open house was Friday evening. First of all......Congratulations Charity and Joy! What an accomplishment already and you are just getting started. You went after your dream. I am impressed. Inspired really.

I was cleaning out my purse- yes, must do that every so often! And I found their brochure. On the front a verse was included. Great Word for today-
"Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for His compassion never fails. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness." from Lamentations 3:22-23
Lamentations from the Bible says that? Really? I did a little research into the book of Lamentations. Did you know that it really is a book of wailings that are read annually by the Jews as a reminder of the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple? I didn't. Lamentations is written as poetry with 5 laments. Reminding us of a God who keeps His covenants forever for those who choose Him. Lamentations reveals God's character, His judgements and why He acts as He does. Insightful. If you continue reading in chapter 3- it says "The Lord is my portion, says my soul, Therefore I have hope in Him. The Lord is food to those who wait for Him, to the person who seeks Him."
What jumps out at me this morning as I sip my coffee is that Hope is NOT LOST. Whew- cause there have definitely been moments- even stretches of time that I felt that hope was lost. But Hope is Rising.... God is faithful. Dreams that I thought were long gone and only a figment of some crazy thought I had, are God dreams for me.
Despite the fact that what I see is not enough money, time, energy, or ability....He is forming inside of me something new and different.

So we had a great time in Bend. Thanks Kevin and Charity. Almost 4 years since we had seen their boys and very cool that within minutes they warmed up to us and our kids like we were family.
And thanks Charity and Joy (you are named well!)-- Hope is Rising. I pray that your center offers a true place of Hope for those who need it most. God will provide you with the courage and strength to do the work.....