My “New Year” Prayer

The New Year sky is draped in pink, with lower layers of twilight, a hue made from reflecting snow and sunset blue.  The silhouette of barren trees delicately balance the ribbons of color in their branches, waiting for the moon’s signal to bow and let the curtain fall.

And it will fall, time and again just as the sun will rise.  The seasons will continue to ebb and flow like the tide and the wrinkles will come and the newborns will cry.  And I continue to pray, like my Grandmother before me, for my children, and my future children’s children.

There is much to see here on planet earth, much to taste and hold and touch and learn about but nothing like the love of a Father who spoke the stars in place, one to shine on each of us.  He casts His light on this dark world and calls our name, warms our face.  We turn slowly as if surprised that someone beyond our universe could possibly be standing there, could possibly inhabit our hearts!

But He is and He can and as of late I wait and pray and plead with anticipation and expectation for the same sunset truth to flicker in my children’s souls, no matter where they are or what their burdens may be.  I look out my window and back in time to recall the stories of old where waves were drawn up and Seas were crossed, and walls fell down at a trumpet’s sound.  Nothing is impossible with my God, nothing is impossible for Him!  I remember angelic visits, visions and dreams and mouths of lions held shut, fires that could not burn the men inside the flame because of my God!

Then there is His mercy, that no man will ever comprehend or understand or equal.  Oh Lord, be merciful to my children and to me.  Adjust our eyes that we might see, our wills that we may follow you as a soldier plunges forward in the front-lines.  Give us courage to leave what ever our nets may be to run after you.  May we never forget forgiveness is but one word away, one nail away, one tombstone rolled away, and love covers a multitude of sin!

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One Person’s Call is Our Opportunity!

I’m learning so much about faith.  How when someone in the Family of God is called to believe and act on that belief, it affects the entire family.  One person’s call means we are all called to do something in relation to it; pray, walk together, adjust, give.  Their sacrifice, must be our sacrifice in some way as well.  Sometimes it means we are to give up something.  Giving doesn’t always mean money.  One person’s call to serve is our opportunity to hunker down and re-evaluate our walk, to revisit issues like relationship, forgiveness, or unconditional love.  Sometimes it means being still and quiet and not rushing to the rescue so God can move!  Faith is all about action, but sometimes that action looks like we’re stalled, but waiting on God for permission to take His next, strategic leap!

Sometimes we think that following Christ means we’ve done something to deserve the call, earned it in someway (negating His mercy), then when we’re called to follow through with that call and find ourselves short of strength or resources, we then conclude that we’ve done something wrong or we haven’t heard God correctly (negating His grace).  Remember God’s ways are not our ways.  There are some things we don’t understand, can’t figure out, cannot control and that makes our selfish pride crazy!

We humans are all about conditions, power, position, measuring – God is not.  This morning, Christ’s sacrifice hit me on another level.  He gave his very life knowing that many would reject His gift.  He put no conditions on that gift, gave it for free.  He also knew some would embrace what His sacrifice means, only for a time, then turn away, but He still drug His cross up that hill and allowed His own creations to pound nails in his wrists.  He died!  He, the Son of God, laid down His life for everyone!

If you’re called to do something for God, do it for life!  Not just today, not just tomorrow – but for life!  You’ve accepted his gift, you’ve answered the call, answer that call everyday!

As Christians we think “responsibility”, as followers of Christ, we must think “throw caution to the wind” because as believers we cannot trust in our thinking at all.  Nobody likes to hear that because it’s an insult to our desire to feel and believe we’re smart.  Without God – we’re nothing.  I remember praying for my children’s safety and hearing God say “why?”, when we’re called to serve Him with reckless abandonment. Nobody likes those words because they sound unintellectual, and irresponsible.  I’m sure the disciples families and community thought the same when they left their boat with nothing but a robe and a pair of sandals,  and never looked back.

But we back up often, to apologize and try to sound theologically, or is it politically correct?  Following Christ is about being made new.  Starting all over with a “spirit” mind.  Hold onto what you were taught while growing up, with reverence and respect, but hold onto it lightly.  Jesus comes along and does the sorting and ultimately it is His leading and His Word that you must hang onto – tightly.

We’re in this together!

 

What is Your Mirror Telling You?

My bedroom mirror needs a pet name, she’s awfully kind to me.  When I get dressed for the day, quite often I’ll stop to take in a full view, and for some reason she always says “pretty”.  My body isn’t my pre-children shape, so how can I feel pretty?  Where do I find the strength to actually linger and take in all the wrinkles and stretch marks?  Perhaps it’s because my last glance always ends where the upturned corners of my mouth are.  That reality is more than evidence of “just” a positive attitude but a supernatural truth that dwells within me and guides my life.

Reality tells me that I’m actually times two of what I see reflected in my mirror, but that mirror and I know the incredible journey behind each imperfection.  More importantly Jesus, who in-dwells inside of my spirit keeps shifting my focus to health rather than obsession, eternal purpose rather than temporary possession.

I never knew my waist was going to disappear, kind of took that one for granted on account that my mother still has her’s!  But now I work on making sure I don’t have love handles.  Those sit ups aren’t going to carve out 24 inches anymore, but I’m going to be able to tie my future grandchildren’s shoes with joy!

I never thought I’d have difficulty with my hips, but then I remember my genetic makeup.  My gentle walking down the street isn’t going to cause heads to turn, but my husband appreciates my efforts, and shouldn’t he be my main concern?

But then again, I never expected to be this happy.  I never expected to be so in-love.  I never knew I could be full of this much joy as a size twelve with 49-year-old laugh lines and less than perfect legs!  Not only am I living and breathing – I feel as though I was just born, like I have my whole life ahead of me!

I’ve never felt younger than I do today.  Thank you Jesus!