Sunday, August 31, 2008

Neighborly Talk

It is said that people should refrain from talking politics and religion with others. Why? I presume so there won't be a fight that ensues over differing opinions. But must we really avoid these subjects even when we disagree?

I know that I get pretty emotional when talking about things I am pasionate about. My relationship with God and the social and political issues that I deem important can cause me to try to convince others to see things from my perspective. I can get forceful and judgemental if the other person seems to reject my thoughts and beliefs without really hearing what I have to say. I admit that isn't a good way to win them over.

So I am trying to learn the art of discussing these topics with an open mind and a loving heart. I try to shake off the intense feelings that grip me and relax and enjoy the exchange of ideas. It is sad to me, however, that few people really do want to discuss politics and religion except when they are of a like mind.

We seem to limit our knowledge and understanding when we set up fences and then won't even have a neighborly talk while we stand on either side. Who knows what might happen if we could love our neighbor and share more than the fence with him!

I want to learn how to speak with truth wrapped in civility and kindness so my neighbor will be happy to listen. Then maybe my neighbor, too, will treat me with the same respect!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Laying Down our Burdens

There are so many times when I think my problems are so huge and so heavy! I consider others to have it easy, or at least they are handling things better than me. When I really take a look, I find them carrying burdens sometimes much greater than mine.

I see women caring for husbands who suffer through disease or injury. I know of moms and dads who suffer the heartbreak of children following a dangerous or painful path. I have witnessed anger, bitterness, and unforgiveness. I see and I hurt for them. I see them and hurt because my burdens hold me back from reaching out to help them in their need. I am needy too. I need a place to lay my burdens down. We all do!

"Carry each others burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ." Galatians 6:2

"Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens."
Psalm 68:19

"Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yole is easy and My burden is light." Matthew 11:28-30

Friday, August 29, 2008

Who will Reign?

I do not want to be political but I am. I do not want to get involved in political discussions, but I must. I am political because I am a voter. I am involved because I care deeply about the people that sit in the seat of power and have in their hands the pens that will become law and be the guide for the present and the future. For this reason I must not remain silent.

Our choices are between imperfect men and women. We cannot expect them to be perfect, nor can we expect them to be totally in agreement with our views. We will not know all that we need to know about each candidate, because we can only see what is presented before us in planned appearances, and we do not know the future. Our choices, therefore, must be made with a higher wisdom. Yes, we may need to choose an imperfect candidate that does not reflect our point of view and that we know little about only because we side closer to him/her than we do with the other. But, is this really the wisdom from on high or is it our fear of being placed under the rule of those with which we do not agree?

I am struggling with these points. I do not know how I will vote come election day. I know only that my choices are narrowed. My soul desire is to vote in agreement with the Sovereign God who rules over all men! I choose to place His choice in the seat of power. I want the man He sees perfectly but still trusts with this position for His purposes.

I am reminded that the children of Isreal cried out for a king, and though God was their king, He allowed them to have their way. I am reminded that David was imperfect before God and man, but he also was "A man after God's heart."

So what leader do we deserve? What leader will lead us closer to God? What leader will submit his will to the will of the Father? The answer will ultimately be determined by God's choice. I believe, He alone will allow us our choice and teach us through that choice, whatever the consequences may be.

Till election day I will be in prayer for our country and our fellow citizens. I will pray that I vote in wisdom. I will intercede for the candidates and the people. I will pray that a cry of revival will be heard calling out for the ONE TRUE KING to reign in our hearts.

Reign in my heart, O God! Reign in me so that I need no other to reign over me!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Jesus the Politician

After listening to some of the speeches from the Democratic Convention, I began to wonder what Jesus thought of all this politics. He probably thinks it is simply a war of words (which it is), but then I thought about His "Politics."

You say "What? Jesus was in politics?" Well, yes, but not the politics we have come to be acquainted with here in the U.S. and across the globe. Jesus came to earth to campaign for our souls, not votes. Votes only pay lip service to this nominee. When we offer our souls to Him as our candidate we make a commitment that is eternal and offer a complete relinquishment of our lives.

Jesus made promises (that He will keep) and talked about issues of our hearts. He lived His life as a leader, showing us the way to live and the way back to our Heavenly Father. Yes, He was more teacher than politician, but He was and still is fighting for our souls against an opponent that will gladly take the souls and use them for his purposes.

Jesus, the politician, has my soul and my vote! How about you?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Polling Power

I am disheartened with the weak turn out for the primaries at my polling place today. It amazes me that Americans hold such power in their votes and yet set it aside without much thought. The most power is afforded to those who choose those who will run in November. If my polling place is typical, the power rests in the hands of a minority.

Our freedoms are set in a balance and judged by the few who deem it a priority to study and test the candidates. The question arises: who would you chose to decide for you? Who do you trust to hold the keys of freedom for you?

Monday, August 25, 2008


What makes you laugh? Maybe you enjoy a little twist of words, like I do. I like watching Jay Leno's Headlines. I enjoy the little things children say that are turned around or words used in the wrong way. I like the funny way we people can blurt out something. As it tumbles along it gathers a giggle, then a heehaw, and rolls on into a big belly laugh!

The funny thing about me is that I take my words seriously and try not to make those silly and enjoyable blunders! I know that God's word is serious too, but even He likes to turn a phrase in an unusual way.He sprinkles His story with little tickles that lighten our lives and bring us a bit of fun!

We have an incredible God that knows us so well! He is aware that living can be really stressful and serious and we need relief. A smile, giggle, tickle, and laughter help us see the light in the darkness. I think He laughs with us, too.

Here are my "paragrafts" Brooke! They were fun to write!

Yes, Lord, I laughed today! Thanks for giving me the ability to laugh! It makes me feel better!

Sunday, August 24, 2008


What do my eyes fail to see? I believe there is so much more than that which I can touch, see, hear, taste, smell in this world. I have glimpsed another reality in each of those senses. A tiny puff of air on my skin, a snapshot, whisper, a sweet savor, or aroma comes into my consciousness from an elusive place and I know there is more.

Maybe this is the place where I meet with my Creator, the One who knows me best and loves me most. Maybe it is the place where I can know and be known fully. Could it be a part of heaven?

Friday, August 22, 2008

Push Through Weariness

I've watched enough of the Olympics to know that most of the gold medal winners need to push through pain and weariness in order to accomplish their goal. To reach a desired goal we must all determine in our hearts that no matter what obstacles we encounter, we will push through.

I Corinthians 9:24 "Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize." (NIV)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Birthday Blessings

Birthday Blessings are my special way of celebrating the lives of my family and friends. They are basically a simple prayer spoken or written in a card or letter. The prayer asks for specific blessings from God to be showered on the birthday person.

Praying for a particular person in a specific way is a dynamic, intimate and a deeply caring way to let them know how much you love them.

Speaking words to our Father in Heaven that calls on Him to bless one of His children is a proclamation that touches His heart. Even we humans would love to hear others ask for a blessing on our children. He who is all-loving and all-powerful certainly would grant the blessing in His will and owns the power to fulfill it.

If your name is on my calendar you can be sure that a birthday blessing was prayed for you.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Life is like a maze, or maybe it is more like an obstacle course. Every day there are things that get in our way. We need to go around, over, through or under, but doing so is hard work and sometimes the tasks seem insurmountable! Projects just can't seem to come together, the weather or mechanical items don't cooperate with your plan, someone says something that stops you in your tracks..

Of course there are days when life is like jogging through the park. There is pretty scenery, and the obstacles are minor. The path may wind around the big obstacles, but the cracks in the sidewalk need to be carefully maneuvered or an ankle can be turned and down you go.

Whatever kind of day we may have there is always a silver lining: a lesson learned, a joy experienced. Being thankful for everything is not easy either but it sure makes the days full of sunshine and not rain.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Overcoming the Enemy

Human beings are vulnerable to many enemies. Most are hidden until the last moment when we are surprsed to find that we have been attacked. Sickness, natural disasters, and even evil men who lie in wait to afflict their damage. We also have a spiritual enemy that lies in wait to destroy us.

There are times we are alerted to the threats of our enemies. Our response should be made with wisdom. There are times when one enemy will take advantage of another enemies threats and ambush us. But with all of this we do have a safe refuge. We have a strong tower. We have access to a greater wisdom than our own.

The All-powerful Creator and Defender is ready and very willing to help us overcome, get through or walk amid the flames of trials without being harmed. Loss cannot take away His love. Pain cannot take away His kindness and Goodness. He is strong, good, and His love knows no limit. He is Wise and He gives His wisdom to all.

I know that I can be filled and satisfied even in the middle of a storm, or after a horrendous loss. I know He hears me and responds with wisdom and grace and hope. I have nothing to fear of the threats against my body, mind or spirit. He is always with me and He will always make the good to triumph in my life!

If you know His name but do not know Him, you need only call out. He will hear. He will answer. He loves you!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

The Chain of Connectivity.

Why would my words matter? What can I possibly say that has not already been said, thought or written? What purpose is there in expressing my thoughts to you, who may have already thought the same?

It is complicated. Human beings are complex. We think, forget, remember, and forget again. We find enjoyment in thoughts expressed in new and unique ways. There is power in words. They evoke emotions. Some words can even be a tangible connection between people. Words can wrap themselves around us with cords of bondage. They can also set us free with keen insights into our souls. They build and they destroy.

So why are my words important? Why are your words important to me? They are the links in the chain of connectivity. We need words to belong, to connect, to understand, to know, to believe.

Words, no matter how many times repeated, are life lines to our relationships. Silence is the killer. Silence separates and divides. Silence leaves me listening to my own words--lonely words.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

What's in a Name?

I dislike hearing so many people using Gods' name so flippantly! The favorite phrase of young people today is "Oh my g--!" It is a sad commentary on the lack of vocabulary and the lack of concern over using the name of the Lord in such a useless way.

I spoke to a 5 year old girl yesterday about her using that phrase in my home. When she asked me what else she could say I told her she could say, "How wonderful!" "That is interesting." "What a surprise!" There are so many other words we could use to show our feelings about what is said or what has happened. I hope she will think about it and give it a try.

Why would it even matter? Well, in my estimation using Gods' name in a common place or vulgar manner diminishes His character and reputation. I certainly would not use my husbands name in that way, nor would I want to hear my name used without respect and honor. God, Himself deserves honor and respect if only that He is greater than we. Thus His name reflects His power, wisdom, character and so much more. Being His creation I, too, am diminished when He is brought low and His name is abased.

If those who ignorantly use Gods' name would only look for a much more appropriate word, they would soon be seen as intelligent and a much more interesting person. They could then use Gods name to call on Him in praise and supplication.

Let's start a movement of intelligent people who refuse to follow the crowd. Let's lift ourselves up and place God above us in our words. Lets' think up new words to express ourselves and leave Gods' name to the important conversations we must have with Him daily.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Treasured Collections

I have been considering the collection of things I have surrounding me. Most of my possessions are sentimental clutter. Would someone else treasure it?

I have the mind to dispose of at least some things for a good cause. I hope to make a difference by setting myself free of things. Love, giving, sacrifice all hurt for a time. The good news is that where my treasure is there will my heart be also. My treasure is being given for the benefit of people. Even if they are strangers to me, God loves them. My treasure and my heart will be in a happy place.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Knowing God

Knowing about God is a wonderfully intellectual pursuit. He is ever intriguing and intricate. Knowing Him is an experience of the wild and serene, the high and the deep, the extremes of goodness.

Knowing my husband involves knowing all the different aspects of his personality, his physical abilities and limitations and his thought processes. After 35 years I am still learning more about him , so how could I ever reach the culmination of knowing God?

Each day God has something new, something deeper to reveal to me. I am delighted by His revelations! They come through His word, His creation, His whispers. He is a surprise every day!

The more I know Him the deeper I want to dive into Him. Take me deeper, Lord! Take me deeper!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Daydreams and Goals

In school I used to do alot of daydreaming. It wasn't that I was not interested in school, but that I caught the string of a thought flying like a kite out the window and ran with it. I would explore the thought to the other side of the world mesmerized with the wonder of it all. Sometimes I would be caught and turned back to the task at hand, my kite spiraling down to the ground. Of course I seldom fully learned the lessons taught and so I came up short with grades.

I still daydream. I love to wander down paths lined with beautiful intriguing thoughts. While there, I enjoy conversations with God. It is a delightful past time, but does not lend itself to the accomplishment of my goals.

So, it seems I will need to rein in my kites and set up some fences where my goals and kites can live together in harmony, kites flying in the direction and for the purpose of accomplishing my goal. May the wind of the Holy Spirit blow life and purpose into both!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Count Down to School

School starts for my dear husband tomorrow. I'll be happy to see him go back just to have one less person demanding my attention throughout the day. I will still have the grandchildren, but two of them will be out the door next week.

This week we will do some practice runs to make sure they know how to get moving in the morning and that they have everything ready the night before. It won't be easy!

As for me, my plans are to make a choice of one project to complete before I begin another one. It won't be easy. I'll need the direction of the Holy Spirit and the persistence and determination of a bulldog to follow through.

Maybe I can follow the way of a teacher: set up goals, make up a plan and stick to it remembering to be flexible but not a quitter. The time is now!

Saturday, August 9, 2008


If you did not have the ability to hear, what sound would you miss the most? My cousins' granddaughter will soon undergo her second cochlear implant. We are praying that Anna will not only find that sound is a necessary part of life but also a rich blessing!

As I've prayed for her, I've given the matter some thought. Here are some things I would miss not being able to hear: a baby's giggle, the soothing sounds of a stream running over the rocks, the "I love you" and "I miss you," of a dear ones voice, music that excites or calms the soul, my dear husband snoring beside me because he is there, the retelling of tales from family and friends, birds greeting me at the dawn of a new day, the sound of my own voice, poetry, words of comfort, hope and forgiveness, the wisdom of God's word preached to bring me faith.

I am certain there would be much more to miss. There is so much I fail to recognize as part of the joy in hearing.

Anna, I pray that you will not only hear the sounds around you but that you will hear God's voice calling you into faith and truth. May Your faith come by hearing the Word of God!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Moms' Birthday

Celebrating my Moms' life is not easy living 3000 miles away from her. Like all of us she likes attention. Is a card and a phone call enough? She wants her children to not only think about her but take time to focus our attention on her. She doesn't ask for much.

I remember lots of attention that Mom showered on me. Even with seven of us under foot she made time to let me know I was loved.

Loving her now seems easy enough. She asks for only a minute or two, or maybe longer. Someday those minutes will go by way too soon. Those who love her will grasp for her last minutes and try to desperately hang on as she takes the steps toward her eternal minutes.

Those thoughts are enough to take the time, spend the minutes, pay attention, enjoy the moments. As all Moms' know, those precious minutes go by way too fast!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Letting Go

God never gives us more than we can handle if we rely on Him. The key to victory in any trial is to allow God to be in control. That is tough for me since I like to be in control!

Giving over control is like being blindfolded and allowing someone else to feed you. You cannot see what they are feeding you, nor when it is coming. Will I be ready? Will I have the first bite finished before the next comes? What if I don't like it? What if it is too hot or too cold?

Letting go of control is an adventure. It can help me develop trust. If I have the right attitude it can even be fun! I hope I remember that the next time I have to let go of the controls!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


I seem to be standing in a hallway with many doors all closed. some I know have been closed by others, but have any of them been shut by me?

I am trying the doors to see if any are still open to me. If so I will rejoice. If not I will continue on, though I might be saddened by the loss.

Maybe I need to go down a new hallway. My questions may not all be answered, but I do know that I have a source for the important answers. He is all knowing and all loving. He will show me the way and keep secret those things I need not know. Thank You for being my answer, Jesus!

Monday, August 4, 2008

The Finish Line

Finishing projects is not always easy for me. It is too easy for me to jump to the next project and leave a trail of unfinished tasks. This is my declaration of intent: I am intending to push through to the completion of one project by the end of this year! If I get it done will you help me celebrate?

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Relationship Road

Taking a new step in a relationship is scary and risky. Even when the relationship has traveled many years together, the road can become quite bumpy and hazardous. When new events, circumstances, people and feelings enter, changes need to be made by both parties. If one turns onto another road the other must choose to go or the relationship fails.

But sometimes it is so hard to follow down the new path. Sometimes the unfamiliar makes one slow down while the other races ahead in the adventure. It takes patience, work, determination and persistence in coming alongside each other and navigating the terrain together.

God knows how it is done because Jesus came to help us navigate the road of relationship with God. He can help us when the driving gets rough and we seem to be lost on a pot holed road of sin and selfishness. He is the oasis ahead. He shines the neon lights to guide us to the place where we can find a map and a guide.

Don't wait till it gets too tough! Pull over and ask for the help you need. He is waiting to help!

Saturday, August 2, 2008


Fullness. Today has been a full day in activity, thoughts, and conversation. I am full of thanksgiving to God for giving me a full portion of my daily bread!

I hope your day has also been full of blessing.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Precious Words

"I'll miss you." Precious words from my granddaughters as they prepared to leave for the weekend to visit their cousins. I am blessed to be so close to my grandchildren. They are difficult at times only because I care for them. But, there is such delight in knowing that I mean so much to them.

Those simple words said so much. They said I am important and loved. I somehow have become a treasure to them that they miss when I am not around. Of course there are days when they hide from me and don't want me to find them! Yes, there are those days when I am more trouble to them than treasure. There is no doubt that we love each other. I miss them too!