Thursday, May 28, 2015

Roller Coaster

Roller Coasters
 “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” James 1:2-3

Oh the thrill for some to ride high, to climb higher and higher with anticipation and then suddenly the floor dropping out, the rapid descent, the abyss approaching quickly  when next it is the sound of breaks squealing, jerk stop. Then the ride begins again. For some the continual loop of riding our emotions is just like a roller coaster.  A repetitive loop of highs and lows. The reliance of measuring our lives with where we are on the loop in a particular moment. Our surroundings dictating our feelings. For many it is not a lack of desire to hop off the roller-coaster but an inability to believe we can.  How can we get onto solid ground?  I think it is with courage, we surrender it all. Surrender to our powerlessness to change our circumstances and then rest that we do indeed have a God who cares and is steady and unchanging. I cannot rely on my emotions to direct me on a straight path but I can rely on God to take me on the journey that he has set forth for me since the beginning of time. I can choose in each moment of time that I have, to abide, to stay close to the” Lord who does not change”.  Or I can choose to believe that I can somehow control my life with pure willpower and might and when that fails go soaring back down the roller-coaster.

 "For he is the living God and he endures forever; his kingdom will not be destroyed, his dominion will never end.” Daniel 6:26

"I am the LORD, and I do not change. That is why you descendants of Jacob are not already destroyed. Malachi 3:6

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Lavish gifts

Romantic Peonies, regal Iris's, fragrant Rose's, layered Ranunculus and bold Zinnias, just the sight of these stirs in me a sense of wonder and peace. There are an estimated 400,000 flowering plant species in the world. Imagine being able to behold all of them with your eyes. It causes me to ponder why so many different assortments? The Peony (one of my favorites) has such a short growing season before its petals fall to the ground and yet its existence brings me such joy. After the dark and cold of winter what is it about these budding plants that bring a sense of hope. Researching a little deeper it turns out that many of these flowers have medicinal properties including the Peony which can be used for gout, osteoarthritis, fever, respiratory tract illnesses, and cough as well as many other diseases. Treasures both for the eye, the body, and for the soul. Spring blooms bring to my mind a generous lover who lavishes gifts on his beloved and I am thrilled to be a recipient.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

True Beauty

Beauty is love in action and love in action is beyond words. In the face of so much pain and violence in this world is there still evidence of hope and beauty?Yes when we unite and make a difference, not when we individually clamor for our own needs to be met but when we meet to fill another's needs. Today love in action amounted to over $350,000 being given in the name of Jesus to reach the violated and displaced survivors of yet another genocide, those in Iraq being persecuted by ISIS. There are so many places of despair but when we answer God's call together and link prayer, arms and resources, differences can be made. The isolation and limited communication during the encampment and systematic killing of the least of these during the holocaust made it easy to do  away with people. This time and this place that we now occupy gives us a chance to not look away and ignore. Anne Voskamp, an author and blogger, recently shared the stories of women she met on a  trip to Iraq. Her graphic stories and true concern along with a plea to the American church roused quite a response and as a result many will receive help.They will not be given back their lives that were stripped and beaten from them but needs will be met. This is beauty from ashes. Hope extended.This is risk, this is love moving.

Below are links to the article and to a live telecast.(replay of live telecast)

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Intimate Conversations

Intimate Conversations

Lengthy talks long into the night

Morning whispers to greet the day

Short shout outs here and there

Teary cries for help

Attitudes graced with perspective

Encouragement gained

Forgiveness sought and won

Trusting, sharing, listening

Hope given

Words of love exchanged

Prayer; intimate conversations with God

Monday, May 18, 2015

I Love you green, I love you pink, I love you blue.

I Love you green, I love you pink, I love you blue.

Many years ago I read a children’s book about a mom who loved her kid’s different colors. The point of the book was to help kids understand how we love differently but the same. My children have grown up with special titles that where whispered   into my heart for each of them. My Heart, My Joy and my Blessing.  Somehow though they have tried to twist those words proclaiming that “the heart is more important”, or “I don’t make you happy like your joy does?” Over again I would try to relay to them how each was unique and loved differently but equally using instead color terms such as I love you green, I love you pink and I love you blue. That back fired big time as they all knew my favorite color is green and so attributed it to the eldest as I named that color first. So needy are we, wanting to be reassured that we are wanted and loved and yet so precious each one of us is in our own hues together creating splashes of marvelous color. 

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Resident Cake Maker

Mommom, my step mom has been baking cakes for her grand kids since the very first one. It has always been a highlight at special occasions to see what she has created. We would tell her the "theme" of the party and wait with anticipation to see what kind of wonder would be made. Over the years we have celebrated with Cinderella, Winnie the pooh, princesses , Bob the builder and Pokeman to name a few. There have been 3D treasure Chests with candy jewels spilling out and a carriage made of sugar and a  swimming pool that  made you want to dive in. Mommom  could be counted on to make special orders including a gluten free cake and enough sheet cake to feed 50 people or if cupcakes were your fancy, a dozen vanilla and a dozen chocolate would be decorated and delivered with a smile and cool candles. The first batch of grand kids are "aging out" and so we see the cake master less often but still appreciate Mommom's sweet offerings including congratulatory "Mexican"cupcakes brought for a graduation Party.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Hidden Entitlement

Hidden Entitlement

I have the right to be understood
I have the right to have things go my way
I have the right to comfort
I have the right to an easy home life
I have the right to be given grace by others.
I have the nothing.
 So much entitlement that gets entangled in our minds, clouding truth. As a follower of Jesus I am called to lay down my life, to die to self and pick up my cross but why is that so hard.” My family should give way to my needs after all I sacrifice so much”, “Why can’t everyone get along”,” I forgave them, they should be forgiving to me”...thought patterns that originate in a place of the” Id”, my inflated view of self. It’s a messy place when we start to look at our egos and start to claim our ‘rights and needs, forgetting to look at the one who provides. I like the verse from Isaiah 45:7 that say’s “I form light and create darkness, I make well-being and create calamity, I am the Lord, who does all these things”. Not me who does these things, not me who laid down her life, not me.

 James 4:1-12
What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us”? ...

Monday, May 11, 2015



There are those who are over-comers and my mom is one of them. She has not only endured but triumphed over a past filled with traumatic ritualistic abuse. She married young to escape her environment of abuse and neglect and managed to raise four semi sane children. Then faced single motherhood head on. She took the bull by the horns and pursued going to college  getting her associates, bachelors, masters degree and eventually completed her PhD. As the youngest my memories are filled with an overall sense of love and bravery amidst the crazy. My mom allowed her children to explore and find adventure. She introduced us to nature with our trips to Maine and camping trips later on. She continued that legacy of adventure with her many trips to the beach with the grandchildren, teaching them how to crash the waves. As life became difficult and the memories could no longer be ignored she bravely waded through counseling, facing the past and vanquishing “demons’. My mom has displayed immense courage in seeking forgiveness from her children and in always striving for a better relationship. She has boldly stepped into the body of faith, allowing God to continue the healing process. My mom loves unconditionally, accepting step kids, in laws and others into her circle without restraint.  Those who her children love become embraced as her family too. She is also very patient with a daughter who lacks in the communication department never accusing or scolding. My mom is the right mom for our family and is an example of courage and quiet strength. 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Broken trinkets

I am not one that has big ticket items throughout my house. I tend towards practical and have had many hand me downs pass through our home. For a long time my kitchen cabinets were filled with mismatched dishes and glasses including plastic fishy plates. In recent years I have been able to acquire complete sets including my practical but matching Corelle with polka dots and Jewel tone glassware. Not “my pride and joy” but definitely a happy place. That is until these past 2 weeks. The first to go was one of the glasses (I believe it was one of the teal ones). Then today, a favorite green RCC coffee mug became fatally wounded as it tumbled out of the top cabinet then finally came a Corelle cereal bowl. I am pretty sure Corelle is supposed to be chip and break “resistant “but this one shattered into hundreds of pieces finding its way into cabinets unbeknownst by me (which is its own story for another day). I was definitely not in my happy zone any more. Later  I was struck with how truly unimportant my broken trinkets where in comparison to those who have lost it all.  Items given value by me for who knows why, trinkets with no true lasting worth. It was not a quick gloss over it kind of response either, rather a resonating deep within that IT DOES NOT MATTER at ALL.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Are you hidden or hiding

Are you hidden or hiding. We can take refuge in so many things. Do you hide behind your good works or your squeaky clean reputation? Is the whiteness of your picket fence what makes you feel safe and secure? Do you ascribe to the right ideas and therefore feel free to judge others? Or are you hidden in the folds of a loving God that says" I see who you are and all your deeds but my love is so big that I can cover you? Hiding and hidden so very different for the body of faith. If we are hidden in Him there is an envelopment for all of our short comings and therefore we can move in utter freedom because His love does "Cover a multitude of sins". If we are hiding in our own self built facade, the confinement can eventually suffocate us. Can we as one body step out from our hiding places so that many will come and learn of the hidden comforting places of God?

Monday, May 4, 2015

Brighter days.

 Thoughts about someone I met recently.

 Darkness stealing, innocence taken.

Running from pain, no soft landing spot.

Moving here and there, no certainty,

Bodies stepping up, provisions coming.

Connections made, hope growing.

Brighter days, God's provision.

Saturday, May 2, 2015



I love being a wife except when I don’t. I am fulfilled in my parenting except when it empties me. I am enriched by being a home school mom except when I get lazy. I am satisfied when working as an Occupational Therapist in the special needs population except when the demands grow too big.  I feel completed as a christian when I do the right thing except when I fail at it. So many identities and so many crisis when failure or lack show its face. My identity too closely wrapped in the here and now. Joy comes not in who I am or in what I do, joy comes in  resting in the knowledge that I am accepted just as I am when I allow Christ to redeem all my inadequacies. I am a sinful creature, full of pride and selfishness and prone to messing up but can be at peace when I let the truth sink deep.