Friday, July 30, 2010

Fading Dreams

I am a dreamer. My dreams are vivid and complicated. I love my dreams even if they are intense, or scary. God visits my dreams in subtle ways. The visions I see in my dreams bring to mind scriptures and that is how God speaks to me in my dreams. I seldom lose my dreams. The pictures usually remain sharp in my mind, but there are those few times when they are like vapor, dissolving in air before I can grasp their fullness. Losing my dream makes me feel frustrated. It is those lost dreams I hope I can revisit when I lay down again. They rarely come back though, and knowing that makes me sad. My heart misses the dream and longs for the message I sense was lost.

I am also a day dreamer. My mind wanders off with hope and faith by my side. I love my day dreams also. They do not always stick around for long, but they are always something to enjoy, hope for, and even talk over with my Heavenly Father. When day dreams fade I feel a deeper sense of loss. Maybe it is because my hope is greater that these dreams could be real. Whatever the reason, the fading of dreams will always draw me closer to my Father who has placed the desires and dreams in my heart.

Father, You are the author of my dreams. You are my hope. I love the hymn that says "Be Thou my vision....." I pray that today. I need You to be my vision, my hope, and my dreams.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Standing Watch Continued

Yesterday I told you about my friend who is taking his last steps here on earth and slowly drawing near to his eternal reward. I spoke yesterday about us standing watch while he travels his journey. I also mentioned that God understands because He stood watch as His Son, Jesus, took the journey. Today I am contemplating another aspect: Was there anyone else who stood watch for Jesus?

The answer is "Yes." There were many who stood watch while Jesus died. Scripture tells us there were people all around, but not all stood watch. Most of the people around the cross were there to mock or do their duty, making certain He died, that the order of execution was complete. Some were just passing by. There was also John, near Jesus' Mother, and other women who had followed Him and ministered to Him. Those were there to stand watch.

I've been asking myself what it means to stand watch. What is the purpose if we cannot change the course of matters? Is it for the dying or is it for the living who are being left behind? For me I think I must stand watch for both.

I stand watch in prayer for the one making the journey. He, like we all, need to know we have been loved. He needs to know he will be remembered. We all want that. We all want our lives to matter to others. Standing watch says, "Yes, you do matter to me!"

I stand in watch for those who are closest to the sojourner. Their loneliness is greatest as they watch their loved ones depart. They need the warmth of friends to stand nearby and to offer comfort. They also need to know their loved one was loved and will be remembered by others.

It takes courage, faith, hope, and great love to stand watch.

Father, Again I come to tell You that You are more than enough for us at times like these. You are our strength and hope. We can never fill all that our loved ones need at this time. Thank You for caring, understanding, and loving us through it all. Be with Will as he lets go of this world and all he loves in it. Be with Carol as she lets go of Will and all she loves about having him here with her! We trust You in all things.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Standing Watch

A friend of mine is taking his last steps in this life and approaching the doorway of eternal life with Jesus Christ. His wife, family and friends are not able to help him take these last steps. We can only stand and watch.

It is comforting to know that God our Father understands the suffering of those who watch. He stood watch over His Son as He died on the cross. Because of this, prayer is the true comfort in these times. Talking it over with the Father brings comfort and hope.

Heavenly Father, You know this journey well. You have walked beside many who have trusted You. You are the comfort and hope we all need. Thank You for prayer, the way of connecting to You and all You can offer. Help my friend live his last moments here in peace. Help my friends who stand watching close to see Your hand upon their loved one. Let us all never forget Your Son who gives us hope to be together again. We trust You!

Saturday, July 24, 2010


A few years ago I was a substitute at a local high school. It was a tough job. Substitutes are handicapped. They do not know all the rules and the students take advantage whenever they are able. Subs are not seen as knowledgeable by some of the other teachers. Taking the place of someone else is uncomfortable.

Today I revisited that old job in a different setting. I substituted for a friend. She is beginning a new ministry and had set up a meeting. She had a very good reason for needing me to stand in for her today and I was glad to help, but it was a bit scary to be put into her place. Even though I have good knowledge of what she intends for her ministry, I do not have the deep passion that is in her heart. I think the attendees knew.

The meeting was not a disaster, however, and God showed up making the time a treasure. As always, God makes His substitute the right choice for the time. The ram caught in the bushes for Abraham's sacrifice, as well as Jesus, Gods' choice for us on the cross, were perfect substitutes. No, I didn't feel as if I was a sacrificial offering. I simply know that my time spent in my friends' shoes was right and ordained by God. Gods' entrance into any situation is a miracle substitution. There is no disappointment in Gods' choices.

The question I ask today is: Have you allowed God to choose a substitute for you? Is Jesus your stand in at the cross? Or have you substituted some other person or thing to take care of your need for salvation?

Father, You gave Yourself to the world in exchange for a way of salvation for those who would receive. Thank You for being the substitute for my sin. Thank You for being the best choice. Let me never forget Your sacrifice.

Friday, July 23, 2010


I have a long list of things needing to get done. As I cross off one it seems that two or three more show up! I like my lists. I like knowing what I need to do and what I've finished. They are a visual reminder that I am moving toward my goals.

Lists are not always complete. There are always surprises that come into my day that were not on any paper, or even in my thoughts! Sometimes those little surprises are from God, but they can also be from the enemy who would keep me from the tasks God has already given me. It is also true that some things I have put on my list are not things I should be spending my time doing. They may not be wrong, but they keep me from my purpose.

I find that I like lists for my Christian walk too. I want a list of dos and don'ts. I want to check up on what is right and wrong. Though I may like the Christian to-do list, I know that a relationship cannot be put on a list. If I put my marriage relationship on a list it might look like this:

1. Give Patrick a kiss upon waking up.
2. Make Patrick breakfast before he goes off to work.(He wouldn't eat it though)
3. Wash his clothes
4. Make his dinner
5. Smile when he comes in the door.
6. Give him time to unwind before sharing my day.
7. Snuggle with him on the couch watching the sports channel.
8. Kiss him goodnight.

Yes, it could be a lot longer and more detailed and include much more. I DON'T follow a list with my husband. I would become like a Stepford wife, or a robot wife. Relationships cannot be put into lists. The same is for my relationship with God.

In relationship we may share our lists of likes and dislikes, but then it is love that draws us to make life lovely for the one we love by surprising them with their list being fulfilled. God does that for me! He often surprises me with something wonderful that is on my "I like that" list. Butterflies, sunsets brilliant with color, stars and moon light nights, new babies, friends and the love of a godly man. God loves me by giving even more than that which is on my list. He gave His Son! He knows me. He speaks to me. He disciplines me. No list can contain His love. I want to have love that cannot be contained on a list. How about you?

Lord God, Lover of my soul, You are beyond everything I could ever ask or dream! You gave us Your list of don'ts only to show us that we need You in our lives. You give us Yourself, and in that relationship You make the list disappear. I now only have love , not a list to look at. Thank You for loving me beyond the beyond! I give my love to You too!

House Hunting

Today we began house hunting. It was fun, a little exciting, and yes, even a bit scary. Out of three houses, we liked one the best. I could see myself living there, and almost immediately, I began making plans as to where I could put my stuff. You may think I am ready to move....but wait. There are other things that must fall into place before we sign a contract. It is those things that are a bit nerve jostling and uncertain.

My Christian walk is somewhat like house hunting. I am looking for "...the city whose founder and builder is God." Hebs. 11:10. It is fun and exciting to catch glimpses of my heavenly home in scripture or sometimes even in the exquisite beauty of nature. It is also a bit overwhelming. I long to be there, and yet, I am not ready to be there. I have much to do before I enter my heavenly home and begin to explore the city of God.

For now, I'll settle for the wonderful adventure of house hunting here on earth. I know God's presence is with me. He will guide and lead me to the place where I can call home for just a little while. (P.S. I am following the lead of my Pastor John in saying that home for me is wherever my husband Patrick is and where God has lead us.)

Father, You are where I want to be. You are the presence in whom I long to dwell. My home here on earth pales to Your Glory. Thank You for giving Patrick and I the chance to explore new places. Thank You for leading us on a new adventure! Help us to hear Your voice and to be wise. Teach us to wait on You so that You will be glorified in the provision You give us! We trust You!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Ouch! Starting back into an exercise routine is hard and the muscles aches don't help much for keeping on track. I am learning that exercise is not just a body workout. My brain gets a workout too!

Getting started means I have to get my brain to say "Yes" to the workout. In order for that to happen it needs to jump over the hurdles of comfort, sweat, and those pesky aches. In the middle of the workout my thoughts may be telling me to give up. Most often they have an argument among themselves and the video personal trainer. Like a bouncing ball I jump through the list of hang in there cheers, prayers for it to go by quickly, and I hate the sweat in my eyes growls. After the cool down and stretch I again call on my mental faculties to remind me that this is good for me and I can do it all again tomorrow.

The workouts are changing my thinking and my body. I wonder if spiritual exercises do the same. The spiritual exercises of prayer, fellowship and scripture study (among others) change my thinking and can change my spirit. My body exercise may not turn me into a super model, but God has promised that I will grow more like His Son, Jesus, if I exercise my spirit. I guess my brain needs the most change since it needs to be exercised along with my body and my spirit!

Holy Spirit, You are alive and living in me! You have made me Your temple. I have not always cared for it as I should. Forgive me. Thank You for making a way for my mind to be renewed. Thank You for the promise that I can have the mind of Christ. Help me to exercise my thoughts to be like your thoughts. Give me strength of purpose and keep me moving so that I can do Your will.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Family Finances

Last Sunday our church air conditioning wasn't working well. My husband and i walked into the sanctuary and saw hundreds of bulletins waving in the air. As we entered a row of seats we greeted those seated behind us. I mentioned that I saw we had a new air conditioning system, while motioning to their waving papers. They agreed. I then turned my attention to one friend who sat quietly and I said that if it was to work we all needed to do our part. He laughed but continued to sit without helping to fan the air. Later in the service the air kicked in and the rustle of fans died down. Everyone was blessed.

It isn't just in the fanning of the air that we need to all do our part. Money has many issues that can be similar or unique to each individual. A family must unite to provide the necessities even if they struggle to unite on differing issues. The same is true for the Family of God.

Summer time is notorious for the church to struggle in finances because of the lack of giving. Members vacation and have many activities that take priority over the needs of the church. It isn't right.

Over the years I have heard many sermons on tithing and a general theme is that we must "Pay God back" for all He gives us. Can we really pay God back? Obviously the answer is no. I ask myself, "Why try?" I think that the truth of not being able to give back to God should lead us to look for the real reason we should pay our tithes with a joyful heart. The reason I offer is that we are a family.

Our church family must come together in unity to provide for the necessities of promoting the gospel. The Family has many parts that struggle with different issues but as a family we are obligated to work together. In doing our part, whether little or big, we draw closer to one another and find joy in our relationship to god and the Body of Christ with which we are connected.

The question is, am I doing my part? Am I dealing with my individual issues so that I can be part of the provision for the family?

Provider God, You are the Greatest of Givers. You give abundantly and without needing it to be returned! I have struggled so often with money issues and failed to trust You in providing all I need. forgive me! Thank You for drawing us together into a family where we can work together to be Your body to a needy world. Continue to open my eyes to how You desire us to give and do our part. Fill us with the joy of giving! You are our example!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Dandelion Dew

This picture was sent to me by email. I don't know who took the picture but it is fabulous! It is simply dew on a dandelion. Kudos to the photographer!
Seeing this makes me wonder if I could ever choose man made beauty over this kind of God breathed majesty. I certainly know my limitations in creating beautiful things. I have seen artwork that stuns me with the amazing talent it takes to draw from ordinary materials and birth a unique creation, but God surpasses them all.
What do you see in this picture? I see beauty, but even more than that I see life! I see life in its most fragile state. One wisp of a breath could shatter the glorious balance of dandelion dew. I also want to see myself in this picture. I want to see the weeds of my soul sprinkled with living water. I want the things that are weedy in me to be used to glorify the One and Only Creator.
Creator God, You are Amazingly Brilliant in how You make the world come together. You teach and reveal Yourself through Your Creation. You open our eyes to see You in the tiniest and the grandest displays! Thank You for letting us see Your glory.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Small Package

Today my #2 Grandman was welcomed into the family He arrived in a 6lb. 11oz. package about 19.75 inches in length. The package was decorated with lovely red hair , blue eyes and a sweet little mouth that seemed to move in all directions making funny faces. I sat amazed at that tiny little present sent from heaven.

It may be awhile before we get to know the gift inside our little package. The outside will grow and we will be delighted in the new things this little man will teach us. We will see the world through new eyes and discover the unique value of the gift inside the body that holds the personhood of Jacob Ronan Scully. In all this discovery I pray one prayer: Jacob, may you live a long life. May you come to know Jesus early in life and walk closely with Him all of your days!

Father, You are an amazing Creator and Giver of ALL Good gifts. Thank You for the gift of Jacob! Thank You for the beautiful and special way You packaged Him! We are delighted! We praise You for Your works are wonderful and amazing and great!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Joy Lost

There are times in our lives when expected joys become lost. New parents dream so much for their children. Once those children walk into adulthood their choices bring joy or sadness to those expectations. The joy is lost or found.

Must we set aside all expectations of the joy we want to experience? Is it wiser to wait without expectation for the joys of accomplishment and celebrations over carefully made choices and godly living? I do not think so. Without anticipation and expectation children will surely choose the easy road. Expectations are the guard rails that keep them headed in the right direction.

Our Heavenly Father gave us His list of expectations on tablets of stone. The Commandments give us a vision of what will bring joy to our Fathers' heart. Joy was lost with sin, but there is great rejoicing in heaven when even one soul turns back to ask forgiveness and begins to live with a heavenly purpose.

Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning!(Psalm 30:5)

Heavenly Father, You are our source of Joy! Your joy is our strength! I want to be a joy for You, but I so often fail. Thank You for making a way for me to return to You in joy and restore the lost enjoyment because of my sin. Teach me how to expect the best and forgive the worst as You do. I want to be like You!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Garden of Eden

The presence of God makes any place heaven. If this is true then Adam and Eve lived in heaven, in the presence of God, before they were removed from the Garden of Eden because of their sin.

In the Garden of Eden, Adam could experience God in all of creation. It must have been an incredible place of beauty and holiness! It was also a place in which Adam was free. He was free to choose. That is a mystery of heaven. Choice is still available to us. Its goodness and holiness is ours to enjoy or to reject.

Would I reject heaven? Adam did. Angels rejected heaven too. The truth is: there is no heaven without choice. God is everywhere, but if we so choose, He will allow us to live without Him. That would certainly be a sad choice.

Lord God of Heaven and earth, Your presence is the ultimate choice! You are worth the price of my losing all that is removed from You. Sadly I have chosen wrongly many times. I thank You for taking those wrong choices and removing them through the awful sacrifice of Your Son's crucifixion. Lead me to make the right choices, Lord. Lead me into Your presence. Let heaven dwell within me.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Mud Wrestling

Have you ever been in an argument that you knew no one would win? I have, many times. It is a lot like mud wrestling. Everyone gets dirty. No one can get a good grip of the situation. No one comes out on top.

How many times do we enter the mud pit thinking we are right and leave wondering if we were right at all? Is it possible to stop ourselves at the edge of the mud hole before we step into things that will end up pretty ugly?

In my experience feelings are what leads us into a mud wrestling match. We become confused by our anger, humiliation, fear or other defensive emotion. We walk into the slime and find ourselves sliding down hill into the muck and mire of self defeating arguments.

If only we would take our cues from the pure and Holy Spirit who would guide us wisely.

Holy God, Your Spirit cries out for us to seek wisdom, and yet we so easily walk into the mud and muck that will cover us with the yuck of this world. When we fail to follow Your lead we lose sight of the truth that is pure , strong and free of all the messes we make. Forgive us for wallowing in the mud before we seek You. Show us the way out, and wash us clean from the filth with which we have covered ourselves. Thank You for being our Savior, Lord and Guide.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Would You? Would I?

If we lived at the time of our nations birth would we fight for our independence? It seems to me that we must make that same choice today. Will we take the stand for freedom, or will we let others dictate our fate as a nation?

The choice is before us. Will we stand in the same line as our forefathers? Will we choose to make our voices heard? Will we not give up the fight? There is so much at stake in the seat of our governing bodies. If we do not rise up and speak for LIFE, LIBERTY and the PURSUIT of HAPPINESS we will lose those basic rights afforded us by our constitution but more dearly by our Heavenly Father, the Creator of all!

I may not be able to post the next few days. I will be working the Fireworks tent with my husband. It is a joy to celebrate our Independence Day!. It is more joyful to share our love of country and our love of the blessings of God with those who come to participate in the traditions of our united celebrations.

Our tent will be filled with joyful songs of liberty of spirit and the foundations upon which we were built! I humble myself, pray and seek Gods' face begging Him to heal our land! Will you join me?

Father , You are the Author of Life, and Liberty. It is You who we pursue to find happiness! Thank You for placing us in the country of the Red, White and Blue! Thank You for the opportunities we have and for the freedom we fight to make possible around the world. Help us to place You ahead of all others, and teach us to live our lives in freedom that is wrapped in self control. Heal the land that we love! Protect our men and women who stand firmly for the rights we believe belong to all men! Thank You again and again!