September 2013


firefly
A few minutes later, Unc walked up next to me and hung his arms across the fence railing. In his hands he held an empty mason jar with holes punched in the lid. He stood there a long time turning the jar. Inside, a single lightning bug fluttered off the sides of the glass. Every five or six seconds, he’d light his lantern. Unc turned the jar in his hand. “Scientists say that these things evolved this way over million of years.” He shook his head. “That’s a bunch of bunk. I don’t think an animal can just all-of-a-sudden decide it wants to make light grow out its butt. What kind of nonsense is that? Animals don’t make light.” He pointed to the stars.” God does that. I don’t know why or how, but I am pretty sure it’s not chance. It’s not some haphazard thing He does in His spare time.”

He looked at me, and his expression changed from one of wonder to seriousness, to absolute conviction. “Chase, I don’t believe in chance.” He held up the jar. “This is not chance, neither are the stars.”

He tapped me gently in the chest. “And neither are you. So, if your mind is telling you that God slipped up and might have made one giant mistake when it comes to you, you remember the firefly’s butt.”

a good read. from Chasing Butterflies by Charles Martin pp.182-183
I love a little laughter offered in our woundedness

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Back Camera This was an old wooden jewelry box I found and cleaned up to give to my daughter. The picture I inscribed is my favorite image of her and I when she was a baby. I have placed this image on several projects that I have posted pics up in the past. It is an expression of the delight I have in her. Below is a black and white pic of us in the same pose taken recently.

From an old blog of mine I posted several years ago (wow, I have been blogging several years now)-
I have always reflected on the passages that encourage us to delight in Him like “delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart”. But one day as I reflected on God’s feelings for us I asked myself “Does the bible say He delights in us?” The answer is an astonishing yes. Many times in fact. Sometimes just because He does so seemingly unconditionally. Other times because of our response to Him. When is God delighted in us? Here is what I found.

Psalm 18:19 He bought me out into a spacious place; He rescued me because He delighted in me.

Psalm 149:4 For the Lord takes delight in His people; He crowns the humble with salvation.

Psalm 147:10-11 His pleasure is not in the strength of the horse; nor His delight in the legs of a man; the Lord delights in those who fear Him, who put their hope in His unfailing love.

Psalm 51:16-17 You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.

Isaiah 65:19 I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people; the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more.

Lev. 26:31 I will turn your cities into ruins and lay waste your sanctuaries and I will take no delight in the pleasing aroma of your offerings.

Micah 7:18 Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of His inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy.

1 Sam. 15:22 But Samuel replied: “Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the voice of the Lord? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.

Zephaniah 3:17 The Lord your God is with you, He is might to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.

Isaiah 62:4 No longer will they call you deserted, or name your land desolate. But you will be called Hephzibah, and your land Bevlan; for the Lord will take delight in you, and your land will be married.

2 Samuel 22:20 He brought me out into a spacious place; He rescued me because He delighted in me.

Proverbs 11:20 The Lord detests men of perverse heart but He delights in those whose ways are blameless.

Proverbs 3:12 because the Lord disciplines those He loves, as a father the son He delights in.

Proverbs 12:22 The Lord detests lying lips, but He delights in men who are truthful.

Isaiah 42:1 Here is my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen one in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on him and he will bring justice to the nations.

Psalm 22:8 He trust in the Lord; let the Lord rescue him, let Him deliver him since He delights in him.

Jeremiah 9:23-24 This is what the Lord says: “Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom or the strong man boast of his strength or the rich man boast of his riches but let him who boasts boast about this: that He understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight” declares the Lord.

1004895_10200774493623598_1108048332_n I will use this image to burn on my next wood project.

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Lot of talk about true apology and true forgiveness these days in churchland.

so this is what I think giving grace to someone who offended/wronged me means and it is just like my daughter’s fourth grade life.

One. Kids say and do things that hurt one another and are wrong and offensive.
My word to my daughter: Address it to them and give them the grace to apologize and rectify.

Two. Kids are quick to either be defensive, give an excuse or grudgingly say “I am sorry” because they want their parents off their back – and they think that should be enough. “I said I am sorry… what more do you want?” But saying it is not.
My word to my daughter: So either be gracious and accept the act even if the reality isn’t there, knowing the child is not developmentally ready to go any farther (this is hard to explain to a fourth grader) or clarify the hurt and give them another chance to apologize and rectify. That is grace again.

Three. Kids get it, express genuine remorse and desire to make things right.
My word to my daughter: I ask my daughter to give grace and forgive and let the restoration begin.

Everything I needed to know…. I told my daughter while she is in fourth grade

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When I was 27 I thought I was all that. Now I am 57. I am not that at all.
When I was 27 I worked on my muscles and filled my brain. Now I am 57. My muscles shrank and my brain leaks.
I was so filled with conviction. Now I am being filled with compassion.
Then so much to prove. Now I just want to leave a legacy.

The midway point between these two period was when my body gave out on me.
That was 17 years ago. It was a beginning of so much realized.

I love life.
I love living, reflecting, interacting, breathing.
I have hope, joy, peace, love.
And they remain with me, not fleeting like before.
Though I am so confined, I am so free.

I use to not love life very much.
I worried. I despaired. I competed. I compared.
I did love. I had joy, peace and even hope before.
The difference is I couldn’t seem to hold onto it.
They seeped through my fingers, leaked through my cracks.
Grace came like rain. But my container didn’t hold.
At the end I felt empty.

That’s the difference between then and now.
I can contain these, hold them – joy, peace, hope, love.
They stay with me more.
And things such as sadness and fear can exist with joy and hope.
Before they competed with each other. Now many times they work together.

I have less now but hold onto more.
I had more then but held onto less.

The journey with Jesus on one hand brought healing to my container so I can hold onto what’s poured into me.
On the other hand the journey of grace brought sacredness to broken places so I no longer need to strive.
The rain simply comes.
Return me to the freedom of a child and move me forward to the wisdom of the aged.

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