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Chaos, Social Justice, and Facing Fear in order to Seek God's Face

You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in You.  Isaiah 26:3 A warning in advance-in...

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

I am a warrior. What are you made of??

He Treats Me to a Feast; Notes from my Abundant Life

I am a warrior.  What are you made of??

                        She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.
Proverbs 31:17

“I am made of strong stuff…”
Jill Scott, as Precious Ramotswe, in the #1 Ladies Detective Agency

I’m going for a run, like I did Tuesday.  It felt good.  It is part of my personal challenge to blossom, anyway.  Tuesday, I read something that motivated me in a new, and I believe LONG TERM way….” The flower doesn't dream of the bee. It blossoms and the bee comes, by Mark Nepo.  Translated, to me that means “do it anyway…”.  I’m no longer waiting for anything to come to me.  I’m in.  I’m living full out, full time, intending to do it right.

I was sore after Tuesday’s run, and I’m sore now, but I’m doing it anyway, because that’s how we’re made.  That’s what we’re supposed to do, though sometimes, often, we get distracted by our own weariness, or weakness, or fear.  No more.  No more dreaming INSTEAD of doing.  I’m dreaming and doing, working on today’s thing AND planning for tomorrow’s thing together.  Why? Because, as Jill Scott so powerfully declares as Precious Ramotswe, “I am made of strong stuff.”  Our Father created us in His image, and that’s the strongest stuff there is.

So , this is a short post, and I’m off…to run, to dream, to move mountains.  Because I can.  Because He created me powerfully, and wonderfully.  And that’s a blessing.  Further evidence that God is Good.

Monday, May 23, 2011

In its time…

He Treats Me to a Feast; Notes from my Abundant Life

In its time….
“He hath made everything beautiful in his time…”
Ecclesiastes 3:11

One of my husband’s best friends has a daughter graduating from high school this weekend, which happens also to be our 18th wedding anniversary.  I remember when her mother was expecting her…news shared just as we became engaged.
Our first, our beautiful daughter, “moves up” from middle school to high school next month, on the 32nd anniversary of the day her father and I first met.  I told her it was evidence from the Universe that she was destined for greatness.

I do not believe in coincidence.  I believe that God’s plan, more elegant and vast that we could conceive, is occasionally revealed to us as connections we are able to see, if our eyes are open. 
I imagine that the connections we make in our lives parallel those of the Master’s Plan, simplified that we might see.  I find that in time, I am able to see things differently, because I bring more understanding, perspective from recent experiences, the time to allow things to be revealed.  Somehow, discovering a new connection is like receiving a gift.

What connections do you see, what connections have you made? Are there seemingly random and disconnected things in your life that suddenly belong?  Isn’t is lovely to know that to everything there is a time, a season, even for understanding?  Is there something in your life for which it is about time?

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (KJV)

 1To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
 2A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
 3A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
 4A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
 5A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
 6A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
 7A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
 8A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

I’m blessed.   When I’m feeling like I’m not blessed, I’m going to try to take time to see the connections, because so many exist.  Sometimes, the things that connect today will fit together in another way tomorrow.  Have you ever seen something old in a new way?It may not be the new thing that’s the blessing, but rather the new way to see what’s always been there.  Like the people you love.  Like the way they fit into your life.  Like the opportunity that’s simply waiting for you to take it.  Like being kind.  Like being happy.  Like knowing, giving, and receiving love.

I’m going for a run, and I’m going to empty my head and try to see something new.  There’s so much to be seen, and so much to be appreciated, all in its time.  And with so much out there, I am reminded again of all my blessings.  Further evidence that God is Good.

Monday, May 16, 2011


He Treats Me to a Feast; Notes from my Abundant Life


6 Train up a child in the way he should go,
and when he is old he will not depart from it. 
Proverbs 22:6

The Saturday evening before Mother’s Day, every year for the last 12 years, my 14-yr-old and I have attended the ballet.  We call it “Chick Night.” We take care dressing, fancy hair and manicured nails, before dispatching to an evening of unhurried conversation, dining, and sharing something we both love, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre.
The first year, the tickets were a gift from my mother-in-law, who joined us. Every year since, I have surprised my child with tickets in a different location, from first row orchestra (on center), to second tier, where the experience is more production, less intimate, but no less captivating.  We’ve literally sat in nearly every section of the theatre.  Now that we are so familiar with the company and its repertoire, we compare performances, year over year.
As she grows, the experience has evolved beyond just attending the event.  I look forward to spending time with the interesting young woman she has become, catching up, hearing her thoughts, getting a window into her world.  

She’s already asked if we’ll still be doing this when she’s away at college.  I pray we’ll be doing it until I’m buying tickets for a granddaughter (or two) to joins us, and even that the tradition will continue long after I’m gone.
What’s the training? That we fellowship together, look forward to spending time together.  That I am teaching my daughter a lifelong appreciation for and loving support of the arts, both as a participant and a patron. As dancers, many years, we have observed choreography only to comment, “hmm, that’s how it should be done…”

I want to be SuperMom, like my mom.  I want to give to my girl, as my mom gives to me, a sense of flawless invincibility, of strength grounded in faith, the ability to flawlessly sashay into a theatre like we own the joint, being cool, gracious, friendly, the one you’d pray to be. I want, I pray, to infuse her with a spiritual cool that carries her from girlhood to womanhood, from being single to being married, from being wife to mom, so that there will always be ballets, and family dinners, and secrets to share, and experiences to remember.
I learned to be a mother from my mom.  I’m trying to train up my child to conquer the world, because it is her birthright. So, as I navigate the teen years, and learn to breathe instead of scream when things get rough, I know I can always look forward to “Chick Night.” And when I think the teen years will simply never end, I am reminded of my abundant blessings.  Providing further evidence that God is Good.

Monday, May 2, 2011

The Power is within us, and we are never alone....

He Treats Me to a Feast; Notes from my Abundant Life

The Power is within us, and we are never alone….

 “If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together,  there is something you must always remember, you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think, but the most important thing is, even if we're apart.. I’ll always be with you.”
Winnie-the-Pooh, AA Milne

Sounds like scripture, huh? Some messages comes from unlikely places.  Does this sound more recognizable”…And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:20 (NIV)

Lately, I’ve been feeling just a little disconnected.  Not cut off, but just a little out of step.  I don’t feel far from God’s love, maybe more so like I’m deep in the woods.  I heard a sermon yesterday that provided much needed encouragement.  It began with Jesus’ disciples being empowered to heal, going out, having some success, and then failing in the clutch.  It wasn’t that they were doing anything wrong; they just didn’t have critical mass.  The lack of faith among those in need prevented them from getting the healing they so desperately desired.  It’s about preparation.  For example, you can’t work out if you’re not properly dressed (well, I guess you could, but it wouldn’t be optimally effective.) 

While the disciples were doing all the right things, they needed the support of the faithful.  You see, as His children, we are never alone, and because of our redemption, the power is within us.  We just can’t get (or stay) lost in the woods. 

Who are you hanging out with? I don’t mean running around like a priestly gang (although I guess that’s okay, if it’s your thing….JOKING), I just mean what’s the company you keep? Or, and I think this speaks to the heart of the matter for me…when you are feeling down, are you isolating yourself?

How are you ever going to be encouraged all by yourself?  While the Word teaches us that we are never alone, it does also say that we should hang out (Hebrews 10:24-25).
So, I’m going to get out more.  Spend time with people from whom I can learn, be inspired, and stay encouraged.  I guess it’s like keeping a gym bag in the trunk, so when you get a chance to work out, you’re ready.  His Power is within us, and He’s never left us alone, but when two or three are gathered, not only do we have the Power to get more done, we are amplified. 

So, I’m getting out of the woods, and turning up my radar.  I want to be ready to serve, and ready to encourage, exhort, and support somebody else whom I might not even know needs me.  Why, because I’ve got it really good; my cup runneth over, abundantly. And remembering the fullness of my life, I say, with authority, this is further evidence that God is Good.

OneWord 2015

OneWord 2015

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