"It is never too late to be what you might have been."

~ George Eliot





Comments - and even criticisms - are welcome. It encourages me to know if my words touched a place in your heart; and criticisms show me how to improve. Thanks and have a wonderful day!




Friday, November 21, 2014

She's a Christian













2 Corinthians 12:20 (NIV)
“20 For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be. I fear that there may be discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, slander, gossip, arrogance and disorder.” 

She’s a Christian 

She’s a Christian? How can that be? 
Not with the long list of sins I see!
Why just the other day she swore
and did you see that low-cut blouse she wore?

He’s a Christian? I don’t agree.
Did you see the look he gave to me?
He rarely talks or cracks a smile
when I meet him in the grocery aisle.

She’s a Christian? Yeah right, I say.
You should have seen her the other day.
I saw her in the Walmart store
fussing with kids you’re supposed to adore.

He’s a Christian? That can’t be true,
‘cause I know the things he used to do,
a rebel rouser out all night.
A leopard doesn’t change its spots - right?

She’s a Christian? Don’t make me grin.
Don’t you know her life is steeped in sin?
And if you have some time to chat
I can tell you all about that.

‘Cause you know,
we Christians,
we don’t act like that.
____________________________________________________________
Guess what? Can you guess? I AM A SINNER! I screw up ALL the time. I am impatient. I am bossy. I get depressed (and Christians aren’t supposed to get depressed, you know.) I say things I shouldn’t, especially when I am mad. Yes, I get mad. And with the crazy “time of life” age I am, sometimes I can even go into a rage that I see and hear but cannot stop. Sometimes a cuss word or two even escapes my mouth, something I am not proud of and never used to do. I don’t pray as much as I should. Try as I might, I don’t “study to show myself worthy” by reading the Bible every day – though I truly try. I haven’t stepped into a church service in quite some time and other aspects of my life are not what they should be. So, how can I call myself a Christian, a child of God?

In answer let me ask, when your little boy throws a wall-eyed tantrum in the store when he can’t have the latest toy, is he still your son even though you don’t approve of his behavior? When you tell your teenage daughter that she can’t go out dressed looking like she’s going to be working a street corner and she screams, “I hate you!” as she slams her bedroom door; is she still your daughter? Do you still love them and would you still do just about anything for them? God, our Father in heaven, feels the same way about His children on earth; so much so that He gave HIS only Son for us. You have your answer.

Yes, I am a Christian. I have my weak moments. I pray for guidance and still somehow choose the wrong path. I grow weary from the constant war. I stumble and at times (Lord, please forgive me) I am even someone else’s stumbling block. THAT hurts me most! To know that someone else is watching my actions and judging what a Christian is by what I do. When I fail, someone will always gloat: “Yeah, right. SHE’S a CHRISTIAN. She’s a hypocrite! If that is what a Christian is, I don’t care to be one.”

God convicted me of my sins. I repented and asked Jesus to come into my heart - my life - many years ago. He forgave me and washed me clean of my sins. Believe me, God CAN change a leopard’s spots! That didn’t mean that I would be flawless from that day forward. I am by no means perfect, nowhere close! No one can be. If we could accomplish that, then Jesus would never have needed to give His life for us.

I try to follow the rules and guidelines God has set down for us in the Bible and for that I have been called self-righteous. I HATE THAT! And I just don’t get it. I am the first to say that I make HUGE mistakes. I am a sinner – in the past, in the present and yes, I am positive I will be in the future. How do I know? Because no man, woman or child can ever, never mess up. Period! Do I attempt to follow Christ’s example? Yes. I try. In some areas I succeed and in others I fail miserably. 

As much as it baffles me when non-believers seem to expect Christians to be perfect or have no problems; it breaks my heart a thousand times more to hear fellow Christian’s gossip and tear other people down…even people they don’t truly, honestly know. At one time or another, most of us have been guilty of tearing down instead of building up. I know it must break God’s heart for His own children to be the cause of discord and strife…Yes! Among my list of sins, you can add that I have many times been drawn into gossiping as well, even when I tell myself I will walk away instead next time. We all fall down…the key is to let the Lord help you back up and try again. I Am a Sinner - Saved by the Grace of God!

How about a challenge? For 24 hours, try to be pleasing in God’s sight in all that you say and do, “perfect” in every aspect of your life. Too long? Okay, try just 8 working hours. Good luck and as always, be blessed!
______________________________________________________________ 
Father in Heaven, Jehovah Roi, God who truly sees me (who sees all), for the many times I have failed You, I humbly pray your forgiveness. For the ones who have watched me and I have fallen short of the example I should have been, I ask that You send other, bolder Christians into their life to help lead them into Your light. Draw them to You. Open their eyes and help them see that it is not to me, or any man or woman, they should look to for perfection, but to Your Son, my Savior, Jesus Christ instead. May they still come to know Your love and accept salvation’s plan despite my shortcomings and sins. ~ Amen

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Searching Skyscapes















Searching Skyscapes

Will the sky be parchment white,
or perhaps a storm-filled night,
with thunder booming loud and deep,
when Christ arrives to harvest reap?
Greatly I anticipate,
anxious for that rapture date.

Seeking Him in the sun’s rise,
blushing pink before my eyes,
in the fading twilight’s linger,
even gloomy grays of winter.
Constantly I hunt the air,
hoping to see my Savior there!

Daily searching the skyscapes
all set to make my escape,
watching for the hands of heaven
to part the clouds and to us beckon,
as the last trumpet declares
“Come home, children!” to God’s heirs. 
________________________________________________________

All who know me well know that I love admiring God's masterpieces strewn across the heavens! I never tire of gazing at the sky; whether it is clear, blue daylight or starry night, counting the closeness of lightning bolts dancing among giant thunderheads or finding fanciful figures in pillowy billows. I see flocks of birds riding the currents and envy their flights above my imagination. One day…

Yet, lately I find myself doing more than contemplating the clouds. More and more I find myself looking expectantly for the Son of God to be breaking through the cumulus, arms outstretched to call all Christians home. The world will be caught unaware, but we true followers of Christ know the day is drawing closer. Considering all the current events around the world, how could it not be? Are you ready?

God commands us to be watching and ready for His return. I am scanning the skies! Are you a heaven watcher with me? Can you even begin to conceive that moment? Beyond what my writing imagery can portray, my friend. Beyond all expectations and dreams!
 
"For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18
_________________________________________________________

Come Lord Jesus. We await Your return with trembling awe and anticipation. ~ Amen


 

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Trust in the Silencing












Trust in the Silencing 
Head bowed,
eyes closed,
breath hushed,
ears reach
desperately in the darkness.
They grasp to touch a tone of Hope,
a still Voice among the starkness.
 
Burdens,
worries,
furies,
Can’t Wait!
The Silence resonates within,
revealing things we’d rather hide;
our faults, our fears, our secret sins.
 
he haunts,
and taunts,
even flaunts
failures.
The trickster obscures the treasure                                         
found in searching depths of the soul
taking glee in our displeasure.
 
he knows.
Faith grows.
Silence shows
the way.
Simply linger in the stillness,
learning to trust expectantly,
the Fullness found in emptiness.
 
Humbling.
Convicting.
Awakening.
Seeking
which weaknesses need strengthening.
We learn, as does HE, true nature.
For such, we trust in the silencing.
________________________________________________________________
 
“God is always found at the depths, even the depths of our sin and brokenness. And in the depths, it is silent.” ~ Richard Rohr
It is always an act of faith to trust in times of silence. It is never easy, or if it is, I haven’t reached that realm yet. When we pray and plead for the Lord to guide us, and yet we sense no reply, we tend to start panicking and doubts sneak in. The devil loves to whisper worries in that darkness: “God has abandoned you. You have failed Him so many times; no wonder He won’t answer your prayers anymore. He probably isn’t even listening! The heavens are brass to sinners such as you….”  
 
I have learned to ask God to shut Satan up when he starts mouthing doubts and fears into my mind. When all other prayers seem to go unanswered, that request is never denied. When Mom was in the hospital recently, she told me that during the dark, quiet of the night was when Satan would try to slip in and discourage her. She would pray, “God, the devil is knocking on the door again. Would you please get it and take care of him?” and He always did. The thought of Mom asking God to get the door just makes me smile; her simple, quiet, still waters-run-deep faith.  :-)
 
Remember always that God never abandons us. He promised to never leave us and unlike mankind, He does not break His promises. Now, he may step to the side and silently watch as we are tested, but He never, ever leaves us! How do I know? Because, so many times He has reached down and rescued me when I needed Him most; even when I rebelled and walked into a world I knew was wrong. All the times He has been there for me in the past have taught me that He always will be there for me in the future. I have faith and with faith comes trust during times of testing within the silencing.
 
So why does our loving Father sometimes choose to remain silent? Well, let’s think about what happens when the Lord doesn’t answer:
1.      I have a tendency to reach out in prayer more often
2.      My prayers become more intense; no nonchalant, “Please help me/guide me, Lord. Amen.” I lay out my whole heart and soul in my petition
3.      I slow down and take time to listen more intently, instead of praying and rushing away
4.      I search the Bible more, praying for God to guide me through His Word.
5.      I take a closer look at my own life and any stumbling blocks that may be in my path to Him
6.      I recall times past when He rescued me and praise Him for the past - and the yet to be
7.      I humble myself before a sovereign Lord
8.      In the end, when the silence passes, my faith is strengthened, my hope shown not to be in vain
 
All good things after all, wouldn’t you say? His silence returns our focus on what matters most…our relationship with the One who created us and loves us most of all. Trust in the silencing. Stay the course undaunted. Learn to welcome it as a gift that draws you closer to our amazing, omniscient God and be blessed!
_________________________________________________________
Most wise and knowing Lord, I praise You even during the times of silence. I thank You for the lessons taught in the soul-searching quiet. As my focus returns to You instead of the world, may my trust increase and my faith soar beyond measure. Time and again my hope is renewed in You. ~ Amen
 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014



Works and Words
We are not a who but what.  
Are you a name or are you
what million little things you do?
We forget that our life speaks
repeatedly by works and words. So
do right and let love speak loudly.

Be a better being; that
better self that sees beyond I.
Today, let love perceive what hate cannot,
than conceit is too deaf to hear.
You choose - kindness or spite? What
were, upon rising, your grand plans for you?

Yesterday is lost. Today, what will your actions say?
______________________________________________________

Lately, I have been missing doing the things that I truly enjoy doing. I work so much, who has time for recreation? But, that is no way to live life, so I am once again playing with words. . . .and with genealogy, but that is another story. 

When at times you are too tired to think, it is hard to feel inspired though. So, I decided to play around with the golden shovel poetic form once again. Then, I decided to make it a double shovel, maybe even triple. LOL. Isn't it like me to get carried away with things? 

Regardless, I hope you enjoy my poetic pastime! Remember there is meaning to the poem as well. Be sure to be aware of how your words and actions affect others - and what they say about you as an overall person. May we always strive to "be a better being."
_____________________________________________________
Heavenly Father, may my words and my actions be ones that bring You joy. Where there is discord, may I find a way to weave in words and actions that lead to peace. I have failed in this feat many times, but with You guiding me, I can become a person that speaks kindness, love and compassion. In Christ's name I pray. ~ Amen












Thursday, August 7, 2014

Over and Above All of This

Over and Above All of This

Reaching out to be shoved back,
try to talk and instead catch flak.
Compromise and turn the cheek,
only to be despised as weak.

Sacrificing most wants and dreams,
bent over backwards, so it seems,
to please those who could care less
about my hopes and happiness.

Faith sees the good buried within,
and yet my patience has worn thin.
How long does one wait on others
to open their eyes to discover…

the likely “we” that we could be,
(so much more than they perceive),
over and above all of this,
the “should be” instead of what is?

Having prayed for God’s guidance,
yet receiving only silence,
I choose to walk where feared to tread.
Praying not my will, but His instead.
___________________________________________________
I know of no one who is not estranged with someone - whether family, friend or lost lover. Sometimes it is by our choice, sometimes it is by theirs. It is the way it is.

I have a huge, loving heart. All of my life, I have tried to please others. I pour all I have into the relationship, longing for the like (or love) to be reciprocated. But, sometimes that is simply not the case. You can bend over backwards until you break! Trust me, I know. It is what I do. The hardest part is admitting that you cannot change things and finally let go of the relationship. You cannot force that other person to care or to do what is right. You can’t force their eyes to see the hurt they are causing others.

Whether it is a relationship with a brother, sister, friend, whoever….sometimes, for self-preservation’s sake, you have to say, “I’m done!” This doesn't mean that you stop loving them. It doesn't mean that you no longer care. You can still pray for that person and for the situation. I have been guilty of praying for God to harden my heart so I wouldn't care so much. The Lord knows what He is doing with all prayers – answered or not. Maybe in time, God will intervene and a change will come. But until then, sometimes you have to step away to keep from being torn apart by the apathy, the anger, the destructive nature of others.

It is not easy. Some are so embedded in our lives that we can’t escape encounters with them. The hurt boils back up, the anger and bitterness taste like bile to your tongue. It is hard to not be dragged back in. You must pray your way through and not give in. It’s not easy...another thing I know.

Trust God! He will sustain you. Stay strong and pray your way through until you reach the other side of darkness. May God forever be your Light. 
_________________________________________________________
Jesus, my Savior: I know that You know rejection greater than any of us. Help me follow Your divine example as I try to pray for those who have hurt me. When I cannot find the words to pray because of bitterness or resentment, pray FOR me. Hear my heart. Guide me as how to best pray for the ones who push me away. Strengthen me, for I am weak and let Your will be done in their lives and mine. ~ Amen  

Friday, May 30, 2014

Lifting My Soul



Lifting My Soul
(My Psalm 25)
I lift up my soul expectantly.
I trust triumphantly.
None that wait on God are ashamed.

Teach me your ways.
Guide through life’s maze.
Lead me, Lord of my salvation.

I wait faithfully
Every day unfailingly
for your return, my Redeemer.

Your mercies are timeless.
I recall each kindness
loving Father of compassion.

He guides with judgment
those who keep his covenant.
Good and upright is the Lord.

Pardon mine iniquity.
Forget each sin done secretly,
seen openly by the Omniscient. 

My soul shall dwell at ease
for even when on my knees
My eyes are ever toward the Lord.

The Lord is with them that fear him,
with those who in awe revere him.
He is the truest, steadfast Friend.

He will pluck my feet out of the net
rescue me from every threat
for he alone is my Deliverer.

When my aching soul is battered,
my suffering spirit shattered,
look upon me, most Merciful.

Bring me out of my distresses.
my self-inflicted messes;
forgive all my sins, sweet Savior.

For I wait on you my King,
Adonai, my everything.
Jesus, my Messiah.
___________________________________________________________
A prayer for forgiveness and deliverance. Lifting my soul, my everything, to Almighty God. Enough said this time around. Because, thankfully, He knows even the words of the heart that our limited vocabulary can't express. Thank You, Lord, for knowing...Amen.

Monday, May 5, 2014

This Trail I Tread


Awesome photo from the website findingyourforce.blogspot.com

This Trail I Tread

This trail I tread is strenuous.
The hardships seem continuous.
One slip of the foot and I fall. 
For a firmer hand grip, I claw;
as the path steepens with each step.
So fatigued, at times I've wept.
Still I continue the arduous climb,
though covered with grit and grime.
Despite the dirt and the sweat,
I'm not ready to give up yet.
You ask why I won't simply stop.
Have you never seen the view from the top?
__________________________________________
This time of year always makes me long to be hiking again and to me there is no better place to hike than the mountains. I love them. It is as if they are a part of me. Whenever I visit the mountains, I feel like I am . . . home. Strange, since I have never lived in the mountains - only the hills. 

Still, this poem isn't solely about a rugged hike, it is about the struggles of daily life. I have chosen the path I am own right now and it is not an easy one. I am tired much more often than I am energetic. I am struggling with unanswered prayer requests, but I know everything works to the good of those who trust in the Lord. So, I trust God with the impossible while I do what is possible for me. 

Imagine this, one day not looking down from the mountain top, but from the highest clouds in heaven! What a day that will be. (Smile)
_____________________________________________
My Lord in heaven, thank You for being my strength when I am weak, my Peace when my world is chaotic, my Hope when life seems bleak. I love you more than life and trust you with my everything. In Jesus name I pray. ~ Amen