A Helping Hand or Shovel?

I’ve been devouring story, mostly in movie form, some in paperback or hardcover.  There’s so many out there, but I don’t want to settle for believing that I’m hearing them all.  I can’t be.  There are so many people who don’t get to tell their stories.  Very rarely are they given opportunity and the few who are, often don’t know how to tell them.

What’s more is, I want to pay attention to the stories that are happening around me, the ones that permeate my skin every day, and bubble under the surface.  It’s fine to watch something like “Blind Side” and be pumped for a day or two about the “Good Samaritan”, life changing opportunities around us, but what about getting excited enough to take one or make one, oh wha-ta-heck – what about recognizing one?

Recently, while seeking first the Kingdom, I heard two words “harvest field”.  I’m a visual person and expected to have my eye’s appetite wet with heavy wheat on a rolling hill, instead I saw a cemetery.  There was a fence right in front of me, kind of like the type you would tie something to, not high, not even a deterrent for entry, and yet a crowd stood behind it and observed people stepping into open graves.

I heard another word “help”.  I squeezed my eyes shut as tight as I could for fear one of them would turn and show their face.  I saw an arm, perhaps even mine, extending a shovel.

Now that’s a story that’s happening here.  Opportunities right before our eyes to love our neighbor and instead we’re allowing them to self destruct.  They need help, and instead of doing what ever it takes to meet their needs, to share with them, we’re handing them shovels to dig their own graves.

What are you offering today, a helping hand or shovel?





Curvature of the Spine “not the kind that shows on an x-ray”

Recording your thoughts is more important than you know….

I use to journal all the time in blank paged books with fancy covers that smelled like Christmas morning, my writing, nothing spectacular or prolific, no special attention to penmanship or form.  I still write today in typed font, but it has become like prayer to me, and sometimes one and the same, because both of those activities are part of our walk together.

I don’t even think about including Him, we’ve come to a place in my life where He is  everything I do.  Without Him, I wouldn’t be here.  He’s patiently worked all kinds of miraculous interventions on my behalf and I could list them for you, but I won’t.

Because, what makes me stand in awe before Him even more, is knowing there are thousands of other miracles He has worked in my life  and others’ lives, that we never see, when we’re running, or ignoring Him.  He is mercy!

I crawled out of the bath this morning, carrying my heavy thoughts, heavier than my thick brown bath towel and they wouldn’t rub off.  The process of thinking is something we all do, but for some, depending on your generational makeup, thinking can push you right over the edge.  If we rely on brains alone, to work out every detail of our lives, we are depending on our own strength.  There are books and resources to lighten our load, but no other truth and strength for this journey called “life”, than that which comes from our Creator and His Word.  Nothing’s more freeing than living totally dependent on His strength and writing it down so others can too.

My bathtub burdens took me back to a recent conversation with a friend.  She had just started a new job, and was nervous.  We sat down on the edge of my bed and while folding some laundry I encouraged her to stand tall, and speak with authority.  Why were those words, the message she needed to hear?

Both she and I share ugly past trauma.  Those realities can keep us feeling like children, not the gleeful, playful kind of image most get when they think of children, but the “bad girl, go sit in the corner,” kind of picture.  Trapped and beaten down!

I’ve been asking myself why that truth continues to bob to the surface?  Those who’ve experienced abuse believe they’ve been bad, even if we know we’re the victims and not the perpetrator.  That “feeling” can stay with us and create a curvature of the spine, one that will not show up on any x-ray, but is there none the less.  Our voices can have a constant underlying whine that resembles a whipped puppy.  As if we need to apologize for who we are 24/7?

With God’s help we can see a clear picture of who we really are, we can stand tall, and speak with authority.  We become the best we can be, leaders, recognizing the gifts He’s given us to navigate on this earth.  We are forgiven, we have a new name, we are children of the King with a message of healing, belonging and freedom!