Aug 29, 2011

Everywhere I send you, you will go...

Jeremiah 1:7 from Sunday’s sermon put on walking shoes and joined me on the path for the day’s walk; the scripture message stretching with each step, traveling across interior thoughts, connecting to memories of grace, forming the meaning posted here.
Paths can be clear or barely there but unroll continuously across life. Some display beauty on both sides though the direction is uncertain and the journey ahead is obscured.
“Because everywhere I send you, you shall go…” ~ Jeremiah 1:7.

Life’s paths have unending twists, many rise too steep to climb, or descend and bend around corners unseen.
“Direct me in the path of your commands, for there I find delight” ~ Psalm 119:35.

There are those paths that are unforgivingly hard, constricted by unbending rails of demand, winding through weed strewn ravines, leading to the darkness of fear.
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” ~ Psalm 105:105

Others present split crossroads demanding choice,

and uneven surfaces that rise up sharply. Feet stumble, hands bruise, faith teeters in the fall.
“Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths;” Psalm 25:4

Then there are the paths clearly seen from the high places far into the distance, traversing through lush and abundant resources.
He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake.” ~ Psalm 23:3

It is God who sends us forth on an earthly journey; marked as His people, provisioned for every circumstance; His word given as guide posts along the way, His commands a compass for the crossroads, and His light the assurance for treacherous and dark passages.
Recording with the Gratitude Community for this journey with God:
Blessings # 544 - 547
God’s plan for the journey ~ Jeremiah 1:7
God’s word that “[lights} our path” ~ Psalm 105:105
God’s “[direction] in the path of His commands” ~ Psalm 119:35
God’s leadership in “paths of righteousness” ~ Psalm 23:3

Aug 22, 2011

Late Augaust Gratitude

Early morning temperatures dip 20 degrees even in our drought stricken southern prairies; a brief reprieve until the climbing sun scorches the earth’s surface back to triple digit temperatures. In gratitude I step out to embrace God’s world at this early hour.
 “Let all the angel throng give thanks to god on high, while Earth repeats the joyful song and echoes to the sky.”   ~ Charles Wesley
535 – Boldly hardy late summer blooms

536 – Briefly clouds sooth over-lit terrain; sensitive eyes rest wide-irised in overcast skies

537 – Late summer trees bearing the promise of autumn fruit

538 – Red Cardinal parading across the fence, returns for three curtain calls, red plumes against weathered wood
539 – Memories of mother on her August birthday
540 - Mockingbirds chasing squirrels, rabbits visiting flower pots
541 - Sharp reflections on glass waters

542 - sun baked rocks along the creek offering sunning decks for wet shelled turtles

543 - Hymns giving voice to praise

I will joyfully sing in the morning, I will joyfully sing all the day.” Psalm 59             Mary MC Donald

Linking with the Gratitude Community at Holy Experience. Join us for the joy of praise! 

Aug 16, 2011

His Devine Nature Clearly Seen...

Morning air rising from watered soil misting cool around my feet.

Slated foot paths and raised timber beds are damp. Else wise there is not a breath of movement among the splendid stalks bearing fragile beauty. Guarded by steep pine forested embankment backed by weathered wood fencing, the shaded refuge teems with majestic blooms.  Captivated by the satin texture, minute ribbing of each petal, and varying hues of color I wander from stalk to stalk framing up each one in the lens.  

Time drifts unnoticed, rare, Spirit full. Silence reveals only the hushed garden sounds which pulse like a heartbeat. Startlingly, the beating presence of a hummingbird arrives on a bloom miraculously inches from my gaze; simultaneously transparent and iridescent.  Wanting only to prolong the viewing I dare not raise the lens. But stare deep, determined to burn its image in limbic memory. Turning with the bird’s flight, musing in reverence I marvel and swell with God’s wondrous ways of extending His presence and glory to His people.
For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities
-His eternal power and divine nature-
have been clearly seen.
~ Romans 1:20

Photos in this post were taken on vacation to Pender Island, B.C.

Aug 15, 2011

Kindred Folk

Family tree dating back to 1600.
Portrait of our Lord watches over a family photo (circa 1976).

We are eight families flung far and wide across the continent. Logistics turns into years stretched between reunions.  Brought together by no small evidence of God’s will; what follows is the heart’s gratitude for that gift [# 514-519].

I seek the memories of those few days as a child seeks its security blanket. With eyes closed the images replay in my mind in complete five senses detail.
Voices that resonate deep in stored memory are recognized instantly. Their individual timber wash over hearing and heart resulting in the knowledge that I’m among my own, as in, I’m home. 
The faces, a gesture, or a gait of movement originating in one generation repeated in the next; recalls affectionate familiarity. Yes, I know you well.
Hands, though aged since last we touched, are still uniquely marked. One of you has the little finger missing a nail that was caught in a door long, long ago.  Another bears the thumb carrying old wounds of a cold winter day. Our patriarch, his hands are ever the memory of strength
A brother’s child has a silhouette much like my daughter’s.  A grandchild is very much her grandmother’s youthful image.
Every perception triggers genetic energy that calls out to kindred folk. My soul opens, reaches out to absorb the fruit of that energy. It strengthens me; repairs feelings of being fractured from my roots.  These hours are precious in healing properties. I pray that it has been so for each of my dear ones.
It is certain that God our father loves us in the same way that we pour love into our earthly families. He scours our beings for indications that we are His own. He revels in the growing likeness between His nature and our character.  He imparts healing during those precious, prayerful times spent together.
“Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.” ~ 1 John 3:2

Aug 12, 2011

Since you call on the Father...

Goodness the wrestling I’ve done; anxious mind work stretched across months. Only brave enough to share my heart-searching chatter with a precious faith-strong few who listen [yet again], who respond with God words that I know, and who point me back to knees-down prayer.
The wrestling is over this: to place faith writing on that World Wide Web, to open soul- private musing to unfamiliar others, to send words seeping from the deeper places of thought out onto screens unknown, to reveal God’s place in me.
Taken to the Book of Jeremiah during Sunday service, reading along, my eyes grow wide as words seem raised, bolded on the page;

“If you utter what is precious, and not what is worthless  you shall serve as my mouth.” Jeremiah 15:19
As this message works on my thoughts … a phrase from earlier in the morning surfaces to be strung together with it;
“Since you call on the Father…live your lives as strangers here…”  1Peter1:17
Seeking God’s word makes us strangers in the world. Writing words of faith in public places may fall on uninterested ears, may distance, alienate, and make us a stranger to some.
Yet faith and words, two gifts divinely bestowed are certain, assures Our Lord, to withstand the world’s discomfort. Though this mind wrestling likely will remain constant; “Since I call on the Father” I will endeavor “to utter what is precious” in hopes that it honors Him. I shall follow God as the Sunflower follows the sun.

The heart that has truly loved never forgets,
But as truly loves on to the close,
As the sunflower turns on her god when he sets
The same look which she turned when he rose!
~ Thomas Moore 

Aug 8, 2011

Luxury is Time in the Morning

Luxury is,
gloriously…time in the morning for devotions; carved out, finally, in this later life-phase of hours defined by personal preference and priority.

A search online for women of words and faith to flesh out the journey with kindred faces, revealed a Gratitude Community of beautiful, tender souls.

Hours spent reading wisdom, reviving hope, recording blessings, rendering the Lord’s word into the heart and onto a page.

Months later, 500 blessings of my own, I join Ann and you tender souls in gratitude for that “place [that thanksgiving allows] God to grow within me” (AnnVoscamp).

Selected blessings from the past weeks:
~clouds like bolls of raw cotton mounding against blue sky
~opportunity to pray for those suffering from heat and drought
~moments of dew misted petals, glassy mirrored ponds, wind through forests, light through leaves
~those who soldier in our nation’s defense
~wind buffeting cheeks, echoing in ears
~Oncologist who prays with us
~coffee and faith talk on the back porch
…never ceasing