Monday, March 31, 2008

Get Perspective

I have been thinking about this the wrong way. Every week I brace myself for my weekly MS injection on Tuesday night. I still haven't been able to do it myself but I have a willing assistant at home. Then I settle in for a long night. The side effects keep me tossing and turning most of the night. Here's the thing. I can be thankful for the six good nights. My friend is still recovering from a dog attack and the resulting injuries last summer. She shared on her blog how she was thankful for 10 glorious pain-free minutes. She hopes and prays she will regain use of her hand--and resume her work as a physical therapist. I have so much to be thankful for. And when I can't sleep, I can pray for Bonnie and others who are suffering.

http://yakattack.typepad.com/yak_attack/2008/02/10-minutes.html
http://yakattack.typepad.com/yak_attack/2007/07/adventures-and-.html

May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, Colossians 1:11 ESV

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Family Worship

It's not too late to make some changes. I've been thinking about John and Noel Piper's article about how to include children in the Sunday morning worship hour. Today our family of six attended church together one last time before our oldest returned to college. I gave my seven-year-old a pen and asked her to take notes on Pastor Lee's sermon about Peter walking on water. "Where is God in my storm?" She did a great job.

Here are selections from the Pipers' article, The Family: Together in God's Presence:

About worshiping together:

Worshiping together counters the contemporary fragmentation of families. Hectic American life leaves little time for significant togetherness. It is hard to overestimate the good influence of families doing valuable things together week in and week out, year in and year out. Worship is the most valuable thing a human can do. The cumulative effect of 650 worship services spent with Mom and Dad between the ages of 4 and 17 is incalculable.

About taking notes:

The beginning of the sermon is the signal for "note taking" to begin. (I want a child's activities to be related to the service. So we don't bring library books to read. I do let a very young child look at pictures in his Bible, if he can do it quietly.) Note taking doesn't mean just scribbling, but "taking notes" on a special pad used just for service.

"Taking notes" grows up as the child does. At first he draws pictures of what he hears in the sermon. Individual words or names trigger individual pictures. You might pick out a word that will be used frequently in the sermon; have the child listen carefully and make a check mark in his "notes" each time he hears the word.

Later he may want to copy letters or words from the Scripture passage for the morning. When spelling comes easier, he will write words and then phrases he hears in the sermon. Before you might expect it, he will probably be outlining the sermon and noting whole concepts.

Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness. Psalm 29:2 ESV

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Speak Up

My parents must be thinking, "Here we go again." Twenty-seven years later. When I was a 16-year-old senior in high school I thought there were injustices being done by a few in the senior class. Politics. Issues around the graduation speaker and ceremony. I spoke up. Wrote letters to the people in charge. Had meetings. Now my son is a senior and I don't agree with the way things have been handled--specifically regarding a sports team. So I took it to the next level. It's a little late to reverse the decisions impacting my son, but it's not too late to ask for clarification. Respectfully. This isn't just about my son. It's about the children in my town and their future. This is a small town. We look out for each other. And hopefully this time around, I won't find my name and colorful comments written on bathroom walls.

Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:4 ESV

Friday, March 28, 2008

Sand Blogging

I heard what people were doing at the beach and it sounded intriguing. My son was the first in the family to build his sand castle. Every day he created something new. Often weird and out of this world. I wanted to build something too, only my style is more true-to-life. I came up with a theme and my son helped me stick an umbrella in the sand to save a spot. I waited a couple months until I was ready to build sand castles. In the last year I have poked around in the sand, shaped, and built something new every day. Some scenes are from the past. Most are current. I always include a Rock that will not wash away. My second son started building his sand creations. I enjoy seeing what's going on in his beach. I have walked down the shore admiring other sand castles. I never knew there were so many styles and designs. The other builders are so creative and add other elements to their creations. I try not to compare my work to theirs. I limit my time visiting other sand castles. I stick with those that inspire and encourage me. I have my spot on the beach. Thanks for stopping by.

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer. Psalm 19:14 ESV

Sand Sculpture by: Varano Sand Sculpture Company LLC.
the Sultans Of Sand Worldwide. www.sultansofsand.com
Used by permission

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Hero's Welcome

You can do that in a Christian school. Pray. And pray they do. My husband's second graders pray faithfully for family, friends, our military, persecuted Christians, etc. Don't forget the pets. Today they celebrated the safe return of a Marine from Iraq. She has served faithfully through two tours of duty. And God has protected her. We will keep praying for her as she returns to Iraq for one more tour in a few months. My cousin serves our country and is a hero to me and 21 second graders.

Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, Philippians 1:27 ESV

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Master of None?

Talk about multi-tasking. I saw a unique coffee maker at the thrift store. It included a toaster oven and a small griddle. Breakfast with your coffee, anyone? I like my appliances separate, thank you. Sometimes I wonder if I am doing too many little things. Without focus. A little of this, a little of that. What is my specialty? What do I do well? And more importantly, what does God want me to focus on?

One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple. Psalm 27:4 ESV

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Grand and Great

He is the older man in my life. He is the man in the book of Titus: sober minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness (2:2). He speaks evil of no one, avoids quarreling, is gentle and shows courtesy toward all people (3:2). He lives a life of faithful service to his family, church, and community. I share his love of God's Word, teaching, words, and books. And I am proud to be his oldest granddaughter. Happy 87th birthday Grampa!

For an overseer, as God's steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. Titus 1:7-8 ESV

Monday, March 24, 2008

Good and Right

It's not just about me and my personal choices. As I'm reading through Deuteronomy, I'm struck by how my actions affect my children. Like Deuteronomy 12:28: "Be careful to obey all these words that I command you, that it may go well with you and with your children after you forever, when you do what is good and right in the sight of the LORD your God." I often ask, "Is this true and helpful?" I need to add, "Is this good and right?" What I say, how I react/respond, what I watch, how I use my time, and so on. God cares. And my children notice.

for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Ephesians 5: 8-10 ESV

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Easter 2008

My oldest is home from college. That means our whole family is under one roof. Riding in two vehicles. Filling a pew in church. Celebrating Easter together. He is risen. He is risen indeed.


You have multiplied, O LORD my God, your wondrous deeds and your thoughts toward us; none can compare with you! I will proclaim and tell of them, yet they are more than can be told. Psalm 40:5 ESV

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Ultimate Gift

It is Easter weekend and I'm reading about Moses. My Bible reading plan is out of sync. Or is it? God led His people through the wilderness and faithfully provided for them. And they rejected Him and doubted Him. Jesus came to provide a way of salvation. I like how John Piper says Jesus is the means AND the end.

The ultimate gift for a hugely ungrateful bunch. I am humbled that God has revealed Himself to me and called me to Himself. Jesus was crucified for me. And I, for one, am thankful.

The LORD your God who goes before you will himself fight for you, just as he did for you in Egypt before your eyes, and in the wilderness, where you have seen how the LORD your God carried you, as a man carries his son, all the way that you went until you came to this place.' Yet in spite of this word you did not believe the LORD your God, who went before you in the way to seek you out a place to pitch your tents, in fire by night and in the cloud by day, to show you by what way you should go. Deuteronomy 1:30-33 ESV

Friday, March 21, 2008

Good Friday Reflections

from John Piper: A Good Friday Meditation: Christ and the Meaning of the Universe

from Mark Altrogge: His Last Friday Was His Best

John Ensor on Tim Challies blog: The Crowd was NOT Fickle!

And a sermon by my uncle Bob Deffinbaugh: The Burial and Resurrection of Christ

His sermon includes:
"The difference between academic belief and saving faith is this: The unbeliever acknowledges the facts of the gospel without adhering to the Savior. The true Christian believes that Christ died for sinners and rose again from the dead. But he goes the extra step from belief in a concept to a commitment to Christ. The Christian says with sincerity Christ died on the cross, and I with (in) Him. Christ rose from the dead, and with Him, so did I (Romans 6:1-11; Colossians 2:8-15). Salvation is trusting in the work of Christ as the sole basis of your eternal salvation. It rests upon historic facts, but goes from these facts to personal faith in the person and work of Christ on the cross. His death was to bear the penalty of sinners. His resurrection was for the justification of sinners. Are you resting in His work alone?"

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Philippians 2:5-11 ESV

Thursday, March 20, 2008

The Parenting Life

I'm learning. Wait for God's leading before springing into action. Listen, pray, pray, pray, and help when you can. Above all, don't panic.

Like when your son has a one day computer class the next day and finds out he bought the wrong book. Actually you bought the wrong book on his behalf through a comedy of errors. Wait, it's not funny. Since when is a thirty dollar book cheap? And it's a class he needs so he can meet a high school requirement and graduate in a few months and you paid out of pocket for the community college class. Again, don't panic.

My first suggestion was to talk to the teacher. "You mean, talk to the computer screen?" Oh yeah, he's taking the class in our town and the teacher is 40 miles away at the other campus. Succumbing to the late hour and laughing hysterically at this point is not recommended. And the bookstore isn't open in the morning? "No, nothing is open on Saturdays. Campus security will let us in the building and the tech person will help with the computers." Hmm. Send him to bed and see what the light of day brings. Don't panic and pray some more. Lord, have mercy.

Then I did what any modern mom would do at at time like this. Go online and research. Class starts at 8:30 a.m. Barnes and Noble opens at 9 a.m. and is located 30 minutes away. They don't have the book in stock. Never mind. Do I know anyone with connections to the local community college or who can pick the lock of the bookstore? No, and just kidding. Wait, the other campus bookstore is open on Saturdays. At 8 a.m. Forty miles away. Okay. If I leave here at 7:15 I can be there when they open. I don't know for sure they have it in stock. My son can start class at 8:30 and do the best he can to keep up until I bring him the book. This is his third (and final!) computer class with the same teacher, so he knows the drill.

Wait, I have her email address on our computer. I can get up at 6 a.m. and email her in case she checks before class. Maybe she'll have a solution. Okay, set the alarm and grab some sleep. Prayerfully write an email that is clear and concise minus the sob story. Done.

No response so husband and I set out for the other campus, 40 miles away. Find the bookstore. Yes, it is open on Saturdays. Find the correct book for the class. Thankfully my son didn't open the cellophane on the wrong one and I have the receipt. Even steven exchange, thank you very much. Consider finding the class on this campus, popping my head in, facing the camera, and saying, "Hi Son. We're on our way with your book!" My three teens have trained me right. I would never do something so embarrassing--on purpose.

Drive straight back to our town. Son calls at 9 a.m. He is just entering his classroom. They were locked out until the tech person could get there. We arrive around 9:30 a.m. and he is able to continue his class with the right book. And remember that email to the teacher? She reads it on her computer in the class. And my son can see her on the screen reading it. And sees her type a response.

And as always, all's well that ends well.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. James 1:5 ESV

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Give a Dog a Bed

I'm always looking for something better. It's the trade up game. Shop around, be patient, and see what you can find. For a bargain. Our golden retriever had a wimpy little cushion for a bed. I've been looking for something better. How about a bean bag cushion? That vinyl should clean up well. I can make a cloth cover that's washable, one of these days. Meanwhile turn around a few times and you might like it. Or not. Today I saw a big comfy dog bed at the thrift store. I was going to take a closer look to see if it was washable. But the owner of a pit bull had just purchased it. Maybe we should spring for a new bed. Hey, who bought our dog a comfy bed while I wasn't looking? Brand new. Washable. Perfect. Thanks, Hon.

Better is the end of a thing than its beginning, and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit. Ecclesiastes 7:8 ESV

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Shake Up

Every now and then you have to shake things up. Change the routine. I resisted for a long time. But my staff was ready for a change. My head dishwasher is now on laundry detail. My laundry person is on living room and dining room duty. I am in the kitchen. So far so good. I am implementing my clean-as-you-go strategy. Keep things moving. Wash and dry the knives and put them away. Right away. The living room and dining room person did a big sweep and vacuum job. Bummer we had to let the dog back in. And as a bonus, the living room person tackled the refrigerator today, even though technically that is in the kitchen. The chief bread winner was so inspired that he prepared dinner for the crew. Nice work, everyone. Carry on.

Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. 1 Corinthians 15:58 ESV

Monday, March 17, 2008

Get Cracking

I had it easy for a couple months. The year starts off slow. A nephew's birthday, then my dad's. Now I'm in the batting cage and I can't keep up. Zing. Whiz. Bam. The birthdays keep coming. I'm watching them fly by and I'm not even swinging. Thinking about it, yes. Getting it done, no. I need to play catch up. And get a game plan for keeping up. There are a few biggies in April--Mom and Sis. And a BIRTH day for a new niece or nephew. It gets crazy in May. Sister, brother-in-law, brother-in-law, brother-in-law, brother-in-law (see what I mean!), and mother-in-law, to name a few. If I'm going to do this, I'm going to do it right. I can stay within my budget (read: cheap, I mean frugal) and be creative. Looks like I have a date with my scissors and glue stick.

Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth. 1 John 3:18 ESV

Sunday, March 16, 2008

On Track

I like how my friend Eric records what God is teaching him in high school youth group, church, and day by day as a high schooler attending community college. Recently he shared a way of looking at the passage in 2 Timothy 3:16-17: All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work. Eric says:

"It's not just a list, it's a progression. The Word of God shows us what is right (teaching), shows us where we are (reproof), tells us where we need to change (correction), and shows us how to change in those areas (training in righteousness). And why study the Word of God? To equip the man of God to better serve God."

My husband told me what he learned in high school Sunday school. The teaching gets you on track initially. Reproof lets you know when you get off track. Correction is letting you know what you need to do to get back on track. And training in righteousness is to keep you on track. I missed that lesson in high school youth group. Thanks for sharing, guys.

http://only4amoment.blogspot.com/2008/03/all-scripture.html

Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:11 ESV

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Blue Ribbon Day

I'm sorry, kids. We are science fair-challenged. But there's hope. My husband's second grade class learned about water tension and entered a class project for our local science fair. They estimated how many pennies they could add to a full cup of water before it overflowed. You should have seen 21 young scientists carefully add the pennies--don't bump the table!--and make tally marks. My 18-year-old son came to the class as a "guest scientist" and showed them how to float paper clips on water. But watch what happens when you add dish detergent. They sink. No more water tension holding them up. My 16-year-old daughter took photos and helped organize the display. Today was the local science fair with over 120 entries in K-8th grades. My husband's students faced the judges, demonstrated what they had learned and answered questions. And at the end of the day, they had a blue ribbon and first place in the class project category. Bravo! Our youngest was one of the second graders. She is off to a great start.

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, Colossians 3:23 ESV

Friday, March 14, 2008

Hold on Tight

My husband loves it when that car commercial comes on. Hold on tight to your dreams. To him that means, don't give up. That is assuming that your dreams are in line with what God has for you. Perseverance. Determination. Hope. My mom sent me a link to Kim Komando's video of the day that highlights all of the above. Watch the video clip of an "unassuming cell phone salesman from Wales" with a hidden dream and see him perform on the television show Britain's Got Talent. You may have seen one of the judges before. Or two. And be inspired.

http://www.komando.com/videos/3-14.asp

Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Romans 12:11-12 ESV

Thursday, March 13, 2008

House Specialty

What is our house specialty? Not the churros we made today, that was a first. Teamwork. My teens could get extra credit in their Spanish class if they made food for the last day fiesta. The three of us made the dough (is that a rolling boil?), took turns with the frosting bag and the star tip (can you make shapes with that?), manned the hot oil (I think they are done--no, I like them crispy), and rolled the tasty treats in cinnamon and sugar. The recipe said in Spain it is more authentic to have chocolate sauce for dipping but we opted for the simpler cinnamon and sugar variety. We didn't have the right tools for making beautiful, uniform strips, but they were tasty. The students ate them up, my teens got extra credit, no one got seriously hurt (one minor burn and one freak cut by a metal spatula in the drawer aside), and we made a memory. Well done.

complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:2-4 ESV

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Just Say Go

The woman at the rummage sale added up my purchases. 25 cents, 25 cents, 50 cents. She held up the cow figurine with three sheep my son was buying for his little sister. Long pause. "One dollar." And then, "These were mine." So that explained the hesitation. It's hard to let go of our possessions, even when we don't need them or have space for them. Am I like the boy with the filberts in the Aesop's fable? He grabs so many filberts in the pitcher that he can't remove his hand. I have a hard time letting go of books. But if I have too many, I can't find them and read them. And what's the point of clipping articles if I squirrel them away and don't file them? Time to love what I keep and keep what I love. Adios to the rest.

a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; Ecclesiastes 3:6 ESV

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Repeating Second Grade

I must be giddy from feeling better. I offered to come to my husband's second grade class and teach a writing lesson. It's been 20 years since I was a second grade teacher in Portland, Oregon. The photocopiers have changed. But the office staff is still invaluable. We read the book, "A Hole is to Dig" and wrote our own definitions. I love that energy, enthusiasm, and creativity. Now I remember why I was so tired at the end of the day twenty years ago. And I was only there for one hour today. It must have gone well, because someone asked if I could come back tomorrow. (Maybe next week.)

Note: the photo is 20 years old. I wonder where they are now?

And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. 2 Corinthians 9:8 ESV

Monday, March 10, 2008

Behind the Scenes

We don't always see the might not have beens, could have beens, or close calls. I don't think we could handle it. But every now and then we catch a glimpse of God's work behind the scenes. If my former neighbor hadn't stopped by on Saturday, I would not have been standing by my car visiting with her and her little children and noticed our flat tire. I zipped in to the tire shop and they found a nail and patched the tire--just before closing for the weekend. And to think that my husband and I had just driven almost 100 miles round trip on a two-lane highway that morning. And that my teens drive 50 miles round trip to the community college four days a week. Thank You Lord, for keeping us safe.

A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. Psalm 91:7 ESV

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Soccer Mom

I told the clerk at the thrift store that I was praying for cleats but I didn't find any. "What sport do you play?" That made me laugh. Are there soccer moms who play soccer? No, they are for my son. I'm thankful my son is willing to look at a thrift store first. And then we found what he needed, new but on sale, at a sports store. Today I returned to the thrift store and saw the same clerk. (He knows me, I'm a regular.) I told him the rest of the story. I was praying for cleats, but I should have been praying for a spot on the team. Who would have thought my son would get cut? I bragged on my son, and how he is handling it so well. It took a lot of guts to go back to the new coach twice, and ask if there was any room for him on any team. Answer: probably not. But my son has something more important than cleats. He has character.

Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. 1 Timothy 4:12 ESV

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Gotcha!

I went to bed thinking I couldn't face another uninvited guest. Haven't we been through enough? Haven't we made it clear we are not open for drop ins? Midnight snacks are verboten. But no, they didn't listen or pick up on the cues. Didn't they notice when the friends came in and didn't walk out? So go ahead, have some cheese. We put some out in the kitchen. And when you're done with that, there's more cheese down the hall. Gotcha!

Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD! Psalm 27:14 ESV

Friday, March 07, 2008

Chatting it Up

My son noticed how I chat it up with other shoppers. This morning he accompanied my older daughter and me to one of my favorite rummage sales. I compared box kicking (dragging a box around and dropping items in as you go) strategies with a woman. I encouraged an older woman to buy the cashmere sweater made in England she was admiring. She didn't think it got cold enough around here. I disagreed. When the wind picks up it gets downright chilly. I asked a woman looking through video tapes if she saw the 90's movie, The Doctor starring William Hurt. I would like to watch it again but my local video stores and library don't carry it. Nope. Was I interested in cassettes? I said I was looking for Hooked on Classics. That got a reaction: "I love Hooked on Classics! It's my favorite! I put that on and the housework is a breeze." She helped me look, but nada. And zip on the children's cassette, Hop Like a Bunny. We got rid of it during our nine year break in childbearing (between #3 and #4). I saw one of my dear friends and she introduced me to some of her friends. I was in my element. We found a few fun bargains. My daughter snapped up some little Crocs for my niece (25 cents!) and I found a Drowsy Doll like one of my sisters used to have. I may go back tomorrow for the two-bucks-a-bag-blow-out and see who else I can chat it up with.

As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 1 Timothy 6:17 ESV

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Fit 2 Read

In 7th grade I said I wanted to be a librarian when I grew up. I became an elementary teacher instead. After a couple children and some health challenges I didn't go back to the classroom. But I still collect books. Now I need a librarian to help me organize my books. I love children's books and enjoy giving them to my children, nieces, nephews, and other young friends. My friend has a a blog with recommendations and reviews of children's books. He offers regular "trustworthy, non-commercial Christian reflections on healthy, quality kid's books." Check it out at http://fit2read.blogspot.com/.

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth. 3 John 1:4 ESV

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

A Cut Above

A couple years ago I almost cried when I saw the roster. I was shocked that my son didn't make the JV soccer team. I was afraid he would be devastated. He took it well and had a great season on the C team. He appreciated his coach and had lots of playing time. Last year he played JV and I thought there was a chance he would make varsity as a senior. Nothing wrong with JV. He wouldn't even mind playing on the C team. He plays for the love of the game--and has been since he was five years old.

Our high school has all new coaches and it's a whole new game. In with the new, out with the old. And it looks like the seniors have to be good enough for the varsity team or there's no room for them. Today we found out my son was cut. Completely. Along with several other seniors. That's so wrong. But I am proud of how my son is handling it. He is taking it like a man. He is prepared to give up soccer and move on. My son knows I would take it up with the district (in a minute!) if we thought it was in his best interest. It's probably a good thing his paternal grandparents are out of town or they might have something to say too. In the meantime, how about his favorite chocolate cake tonight? I can do that.

Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Romans 12:15 ESV

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Walk with Thee

I told my daughter, "I'll get the dishwasher soap and meet you in the marked-down bakery goods." Before she knew it, I was there. She isn't used to me walking so fast. Me either. I still marvel at being able to walk without a cane and at a good clip. As I walk, I think of one of my favorite hymns, "Just a Closer Walk with Thee." I hold on to that even when I'm not able to walk very well.

I am weak, but Thou art strong;
Jesus, keep me from all wrong;
I’ll be satisfied as long
As I walk, let me walk close to Thee.

Refrain

Just a closer walk with Thee,
Grant it, Jesus, is my plea,
Daily walking close to Thee,
Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

Through this world of toil and snares,
If I falter, Lord, who cares?
Who with me my burden shares?
None but Thee, dear Lord, none but Thee.

Refrain

When my feeble life is o’er,
Time for me will be no more;
Guide me gently, safely o’er
To Thy kingdom shore, to Thy shore.

Refrain

but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31 ESV

Monday, March 03, 2008

As For Me

I don't know if the two are in cahoots. Today I saw two cars parked next to each other with license plates: WOT NOW and NOT NOW. To me, "what now" implies, "What else can go wrong?" I've thought that before. Appliances often break in succession, or mishaps multiply when you're under a deadline. I'm sorry to admit that I've had the "not now" attitude, especially with my children. But I'd like to adopt a different tagline: AS FOR ME. Today I read in Psalm 26:11, "But as for me, I shall walk in my integrity; redeem me, and be gracious to me" (ESV). No matter what happens, I can respond with integrity. I trust God to help me through.

But as for me, I will look to the LORD; I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me. Micah 7:7 ESV

Sunday, March 02, 2008

What a Friend

In the small country church we visited today, it was okay to answer outloud. The preacher asked, "What are some key words you use when sharing the good news of the gospel?" People said love, joy, hope, forgiveness, eternal life, etc. My husband and I both thought of peace. But you know what theme has been jumping off the page in my Bible reading? Friendship. Today I read Psalm 25:14: The friendship of the LORD is for those who fear him, and he makes known to them his covenant (ESV). Blows me away. Humbles me. And thrills my heart.

You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. John 15:14-16 ESV

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Driving Mom

It's the first Saturday of the month. My husband knows what that means. I like to check out the local thrift store with their half-price sale. We got there just after it opened. And my parents showed up soon after. My husband said, "Like mother, like daughter." I don't think any of us found red-hot bargains today, but we had fun looking. Earlier this week my mom found some great chairs at the other thrift store in town. An easy chair for her and a nice office chair for my dad. She asked me to check them out before she purchased them. I drove her in her car because she doesn't enjoy driving and my dad was at home. What's funny is that usually my 16-year-old daughter drives me around. We're making good memories.

Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, Titus 2:3-4 ESV