Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Christmas Eve Not Long Ago

This is one of my favorite poems that I've ever written.
I hope you enjoy!


Twas a Christmas Eve not long ago
That was much like any other.
Around the tree the family gathered:
Mother, Father, Sister, and Brother.
The stockings were hung by the chimney
(Because that's where they go),
And over the front door
Hung a piece of mistletoe.
Scents of eggnog and cider
And Dad's favorite - fruitcake -
Drifted in from the kitchen
From all Mom had baked.
The radio played
"Jingle Bell Rock"
And the little family
Began to talk.
"I want goodies and cookies
And all Mommy's best,"
Said the little girl
As she clapped by her chest.
"I want a bomb,
And I'll blow up the world,"
Said the action packed son
As he turned and he twirled.
"I want a makeover
And Rodeo Drive's finest clothes,"
Said the beautiful wife
As she struck a model's pose.
Without a moment's delay
The father began to speak
As he looked as his family
His voice was quite weak.
"I want a family that represents
Good in this life.
Not a glutinous daughter,
Angry son, or superficial wife."
There was a moment of silence
As through each person's head
Flashed a picture of regret
Of all they had said.
"I want a diamond
To sell for the poor."
"I want a machine
That will end all war."
The mother and son looked at the girl
Who said with laughter,
"I still want that cookie,
But I guess it doesn't matter."

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Age is Not a Factor

On the finale of the most recent season of The Biggest Loser, two of the contestants (both in their sixties) made a very similar observation: Age is not a factor. Both of these contestants, having started the season severely overweight, finished it 80+ pounds lighter. Quite a feat for someone at their age.

When we look at the Christmas story, their are two pregnancies which testify to the same. Elizabeth, who was an old woman, conceives by her husband. Now this is not a new miracle, as it also appears toward the beginning of the Bible when the nation of Israel is founded. Abram is promised offspring so plentiful that they are like the stars in the sky, yet he is very old. And in the same way God keeps his promise to Abram/Abraham, He keeps His promise to Elizabeth and her husband Zechariah.

At the same time, Mary, who was a young woman and Elizabeth's cousin, discovers she too is pregnant. Mary, however, is not yet married. This news, while not shocking today, would have been life shattering then. It didn't matter that Mary, a virgin, was pregnant through the touch of the Holy Spirit - not that of a man. Yet, instead of destroying Mary's life, this news fulfills it.


In both cases, Mary and Elizabeth were faithful to God. It didn't matter that one was too young or that one was too old. They allowed themselves to be available for whenever God saw fit to use them.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Brace yourself

Can I admit something without judgement? I've felt a little a Job-like lately. In the past few weeks I've gotten so much bad news that I'm almost not shocked by it anymore. Numb isn't the right adjective, but certainly not surprised. I feel like I am watching a storm, with thunderous pain stiking all around. I never know quite what to say, especially since "I'm sorry" seems so trite.

A few years ago we experienced a similar season in my husband's family and it got to the point where one of his cousins confessed, "I'm almost afraid to answer the phone when it rings."

I know I am no Job. I've given in to the temptation more than once to ask God why, and each time I hear Him respond the same way He did in Job 38:
1 Then the LORD spoke to Job out of the storm. He said:
2 “Who is this that obscures my plans
with words without knowledge?
3 Brace yourself like a man;
I will question you,
and you shall answer me.

4 “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?
Tell me, if you understand.
5 Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know!
Who stretched a measuring line across it?
6 On what were its footings set,
or who laid its cornerstone—
7 while the morning stars sang together
and all the angels[a] shouted for joy?

8 “Who shut up the sea behind doors
when it burst forth from the womb,
9 when I made the clouds its garment
and wrapped it in thick darkness,
10 when I fixed limits for it
and set its doors and bars in place,
11 when I said, ‘This far you may come and no farther;
here is where your proud waves halt’?

12 “Have you ever given orders to the morning,
or shown the dawn its place,
13 that it might take the earth by the edges
and shake the wicked out of it?
14 The earth takes shape like clay under a seal;
its features stand out like those of a garment.
15 The wicked are denied their light,
and their upraised arm is broken.

16 “Have you journeyed to the springs of the sea
or walked in the recesses of the deep?
17 Have the gates of death been shown to you?
Have you seen the gates of the deepest darkness?
18 Have you comprehended the vast expanses of the earth?
Tell me, if you know all this.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


On a recent trip to my local Chili's I noticed that their annual Create-A-Pepper fundraiser for St Jude's had expanded to not only including t-shirts, but also slap bracelets. If you are a child of the 80's your mind has already filled with joyful memories of your youth - slapping your wrist, your friends, and basically anything that may or may not capture a slap from one of the world's coolest creations. I HAD to get one for each of my kids.

They were, obviously, immediately excited. By the next day, Josiah had become completely addicted. Studying the every nuance of the toy he asked, "What does this spell?"

"H. O. P. E. Hope," I told him.

"You mean, like, 'I hope I get that new Lego police set'?" he asked me.

For the next five minutes I listened to everything he hoped for. The list included a variety of items from a dog, to new toys, to a vacation, to a new mother (which upon realizing what he said he quickly recanted).

And as Josiah continued to consider his hopes, I considered mine. I remembered Romans 8:22-24 (NIV) which says:
We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have?

I love that last part: Hope that is seen is no hope at all. The mystery of hope is that it exists and often for no reason. Hypothetically speaking, hope that IS seen is not hope, but rather experience. Experience is trusting in yourself. Hope is trusting in something or someone greater. I hope that my life reflects the words of Edward Mote's classic hymn:

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly trust in Jesus’ Name.

When darkness seems to hide His face,
I rest on His unchanging grace.
In every high and stormy gale,
My anchor holds within the veil.

His oath, His covenant, His blood,
Support me in the whelming flood.
When all around my soul gives way,
He then is all my Hope and Stay.

When He shall come with trumpet sound,
Oh may I then in Him be found.
Dressed in His righteousness alone,
Faultless to stand before the throne.

On Christ the solid Rock I stand,
All other ground is sinking sand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Ka- Ka- King

Today marked a right of passage for Josiah - his first day of speech therapy. Having gone through this same process with Jacob, I knew exactly what to expect. As I listened to my four year old son interact with Miss Tonja, I giggled at things he said. Blue, green, black, white, and brown are boy colors. Pink and yellow are girls colors, and purple too. Don't you just love how children think?

Their first day together focused on the "k" sound. A classic error, Josiah forms his K's at the front of his mouth and it sounds like a T. I was impressed that in just 30 minutes of talking, Josiah's favorite dog had gone from "Tuptate" to "Cupcake". Thinking I would keep the momentum going, on the way home we discussed different things that started with a K. "Josiah, do we have a king?" I asked him.

"Yes," he replied.

"We don't have a king, we have a president," I corrected him.

He persisted, "No, we have a king."

Thinking I had outsmarted him, I asked, "Who is our king?"

He had to think for only a moment before telling me, "God is our King."

Yes, Josiah. Yes, He is.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Practical Application

We are less than a week into the new school year, and I am finding myself frustrated trying to explain rounding to my 4th grade son. An idea that you and I probably take for granted, but it was really taking a toll on him. Thinking the problem might be that he doesn't understand the broad concept I tried to give him a real life scenario in which we might round a number: How many people are coming to the party? About 50. I'm still not sure if it helped him.

I've been thinking about all the lessons I've learned (and even taught) about life, my faith, and all the things that come between them. There are so many cliches that come to my mind. The other day a song from 15+ years ago popped in my head. As a teenager when I heard it, I thought it was a good piece of advice:

Take the cross-road,
It's your best bet.
The road might be a little rugged,
But it will get you there.

As an adult, I wonder just what this means. Yes, I understand that the idea is to cling to my beliefs when times get hard, but what does the cross-road look like when you are suffering? What do we do when there seems to be no right choice?

I'm wondering if what is missing in our teaching is practical application. We need to to be taught things like:
- When you are mad at someone, talk to them about it until you can reach forgiveness.
- When you feel far away from God, read the Bible.
- When you don't have enough money, stop getting your hair colored before you stop giving to God.
-When your marriage is on the rocks, fight for it instead of for yourself.

God help me to see Your will in the little choices I make because I know the big stuff of life is just a compilation of smaller decisions. Amen.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


Can I just take a minute to brag about my kids? I don't really like to do that very often because all kids are pretty amazing and, lets face it, most parents think their kids are more awesome than the rest. First, I must admit that I did one of those lame mom things - I've not let my kids use a gift card they received for Christmas seven months ago! It wasn't intentional, ok maybe it was. Regardless, here we are.

My mother has been looking into buying some backyard play equipment. Since my children spend a lot of time there, and I know my parents are struggling financially, I asked Jacob first, and then Josiah, if they would like to contribute a portion of their gift card. It seemed fair since they would both enjoy the equipment.

Jacob matter of factly responded, "Grandma can have it all."

No hesitation, no argument, just generosity. We could learn so much from our children.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


For the past two years I've been fighting a battle to regain my health, not that I was that unhealthy before - at least by most people's standards. You see at almost 28 years old, I was overweight (technically obese by BMI standards, though I carried it well and few would have categorized me as such). I also had battled severe fatigue that doctors were not quite able to diagnose, but since fatigue can so easily be attributed to other sources, most people believed I just pushed myself too hard. That all changed on a summer day when I visited the doctor for what I was sure was a pulled stomach muscle only to find out what I thought was a sprain from rib to hip, was actually a dangerous infection in my intestines. Three days of a liquid diet, followed by thirty days of a restricted diet, started what has so far been a two year journey that will realistically continue my entire life.

At my heaviest weight, I never wanted to set a goal. The idea of having to lose 40+ pounds seemed impossible. But as my health issues forced weight loss, and the unspoken goal changed from needing to lose 40lbs to just 30lbs to now just having about ten pounds left, I am surprised at what having a goal has done for me:

1. It's made progress easier to track.
2. It's made long term goals seem more attainable.
3. It's made day to day decisions easier for the most part.

So, if I as a Christian have wild aspirations that I fear verbalizing - simply out of fear of them - I am doing myself a disservice. If I want to memorize scripture, will it magically transfer into my brain? No, but I can commit to wanting this and then take the steps necessary to achieve it.

God help me set goals that You approve of, and then help me achieve them.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

If you can't do it right...

I hear the nagging words of my mother, "If you can't do it right, don't do it at all." I honestly can't say I remember a specific situation where I was given this command, and yet I have it somewhere in the back of my head. While many people use this as an excuse to avoid trying something new, or avoid something better, the truth is that there is definitely a time and place for this advice. Sword swallowing. Knife throwing. Those immediately come to mind. And why? For no other reason then our own safety and the safety of those around us.

I love the translation of Malachi 1 in The Message:
A Message. God's Word to Israel through Malachi: God said, "I love you." You replied, "Really? How have you loved us?" "Look at history" (this is God's answer). "Look at how differently I've treated you, Jacob, from Esau: I loved Jacob and hated Esau. I reduced pretentious Esau to a molehill, turned his whole country into a ghost town."

When Edom (Esau) said, "We've been knocked down, but we'll get up and start over, good as new," God-of-the-Angel-Armies said, "Just try it and see how far you get. When I knock you down, you stay down. People will take one look at you and say, 'Land of Evil!' and 'the God-cursed tribe!'

"Yes, take a good look. Then you'll see how faithfully I've loved you and you'll want even more, saying, 'May God be even greater, beyond the borders of Israel!'

"Isn't it true that a son honors his father and a worker his master? So if I'm your Father, where's the honor? If I'm your Master, where's the respect?" God-of-the-Angel-Armies is calling you on the carpet: "You priests despise me!

"You say, 'Not so! How do we despise you?'

"By your shoddy, sloppy, defiling worship.

"You ask, 'What do you mean, "defiling"? What's defiling about it?'

"When you say, 'The altar of God is not important anymore; worship of God is no longer a priority,' that's defiling. And when you offer worthless animals for sacrifices in worship, animals that you're trying to get rid of—blind and sick and crippled animals—isn't that defiling? Try a trick like that with your banker or your senator—how far do you think it will get you?" God-of-the-Angel-Armies asks you.

"Get on your knees and pray that I will be gracious to you. You priests have gotten everyone in trouble. With this kind of conduct, do you think I'll pay attention to you?" God-of-the-Angel-Armies asks you.

"Why doesn't one of you just shut the Temple doors and lock them? Then none of you can get in and play at religion with this silly, empty-headed worship. I am not pleased. The God-of-the-Angel-Armies is not pleased. And I don't want any more of this so-called worship!

"I am honored all over the world. And there are people who know how to worship me all over the world, who honor me by bringing their best to me. They're saying it everywhere: 'God is greater, this God-of-the-Angel-Armies.'

"All except you. Instead of honoring me, you profane me. You profane me when you say, 'Worship is not important, and what we bring to worship is of no account,' and when you say, 'I'm bored—this doesn't do anything for me.' You act so superior, sticking your noses in the air—act superior to me, God-of-the-Angel-Armies! And when you do offer something to me, it's a hand-me-down, or broken, or useless. Do you think I'm going to accept it? This is God speaking to you!

"A curse on the person who makes a big show of doing something great for me—an expensive sacrifice, say—and then at the last minute brings in something puny and worthless! I'm a great king, God-of-the-Angel-Armies, honored far and wide, and I'll not put up with it!"

The people of God had definitely put themselves in a situation where if they weren't going to do it right, they shouldn't be doing it at all. Their motives were wrong even if their actions were right.

Sometimes I worry that God is watching our generation and saying the same thing.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Finisher's Medal

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day — and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing. (2 Timothy 4:7-8, NIV)

The idea of a finisher's medal never really appealed to me until I found myself taking my last steps across a finish line, 12k from where I started 92 minutes and 41 seconds previously. Though I finished in the top 1/3 of females that day (7490 of 24,139), I hardly deserved an award for performance. True, my finishing time was about ten minutes faster than I had ever trained at home - thank you race day adrenaline - but it was hardly something I would brag about.

If on race day, they were only handing out awards for those who deserve it, very few would have received one; and if God's handing out awards for those who deserve it, none would receive it. You see, essentially, none of us are able to run the exact race we were intended to. We've fallen and failed along the way, but the joy is in getting back up and pushing on. God is a righteous Judge and sees our heart and our efforts.

So, maybe a finisher's medal is cool to me now, because I have one. Or maybe it's because I know I am still in the middle of a race, one that will eventually award me an even cooler finisher's medal, the crown of righteousness.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


One day about a year and a half ago, upon seeing the boyscout group at our local park, I asked Jacob if he'd like to be a boyscout. Adamantly, he answered he did not. He had developed some very strong feelings about them, which I thought was interesting since I don't know any boyscouts and I didn't think he did either. Fast forward to last week when I picked up Jacob from school. There were boys dressed in their uniforms, ready to go to their meeting. It all made sense now. He had obviously had an encounter or learned the reputation of one or more of the boyscouts at his school.

A few bad apples, right?

So many times I hear of the reputation many so-called Christians have earned for those of us earnestly trying to follow God. Christians are often stereo-typed for the wrong doings of those who called themselves something they never really were.

Or worse: sometimes Christians are exactly what the masses are perceived as, but we are too self-righteous to see it, humble ourselves, and ask God to change us.

Thursday, May 19, 2011


So that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. (1 Corinthians 12:25-26)

Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. (Romans 12:15)

Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. (1 Peter 3:8)

In the past month, I've had two eye opening experiences that have taught me I need to be more sympathetic.

Experience 1:
My oldest son, Jacob, is eight years old and has had vary levels of speech therapy since he was five. After three years he is much better then when started. I remember distinctly telling the first therapist we met with that most of the time when he talks I had to translate because people who didn't talk to him everyday literally could not understand him. We started with two one hour therapy sessions each week, and Jacob now only has to go once a week for thirty minutes at a time. Here we are years later, and my younger son, Josiah, who is now four has begun to show many of the same sign. We've had him tested, and sure enough, he will begin to have speech therapy in the fall when school resumes. But meanwhile, Jacob gives Josiah such a hard time about the way he talks. It would be one thing if he was correcting him to help him say things correctly, but sometimes he is just being mean. Of all the people that should be sympathetic to Josiah's situation, it should be Jacob, right?

Experience 2:
A few weeks ago, for several days when I leave Josiah at my mom's house, Ty (another little boy who she watches, who is only 1) would cry. I know Ty likes me, but it's not enough that my leaving each day would make him cry. It really feels like he is trying to experience the pain that Josiah should feel (and who incidentally could not care less when I leave... lol). What a sweet expression of sympathy and compassion!

So where are you? If you're anything like me, you have far too many days when you are not sympathetic toward someone experiencing difficulty. Shame on me for those times, especially when it's an experience I've already come through.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Any size you want

You're going to read a phrase a lot in this one: Completely Honest.

If I asked you to pick the clothing size you want to be, what would you say? Let's be completely honest - most people would pick a size smaller than they are. However, I propose that the size you are IS the size you want to be. You may dream of being a smaller size, but that is different. What do I mean? Even if you are completely unhappy with your clothing size, you are that size because you want it more or less than something else. Your size is a direct result - albeit confusing and mysterious at times - of the effort you put into it.

Tangent Alert: I'm not denying that there often genetic issues that are completely out of our control, causing a person to be thinner or larger. However, if we're being completely honest, in the majority of situations size is a direct result of diet, exercise, and social influence. Agree?

Ok, back to my last pre-tangent thought: The effort you put into it. When I am able to eat healthy and exercise frequently I find that my fat reduces and my muscle increases. Not necessarily rapidly or consistently, but there are definite changes in my body that do not occur when eating without regard and not staying active. Furthermore, I continue to read that eating healthy makes you want to exercise and vice versa.

So I am here to say that your faith, also, can be any size you want. Do you want to live a pseudo-Christian life? Though if we are going to be completely honest, is there really such a thing as pseudo-Christian? It's the religious equivalent of being half-pregnant. You either are, or you aren't.

Putting aside for a moment the items that you are pre-disposed to - a short temper, addiction, worry, or really anything that draws you away from God - what do you chose to do with your faith? Will you exercise it for the muscle it is and make it grow? Or will you feed the sinful nature that wants so many things that will ultimately lead to death?

As with diet and exercise, when you have victories in your faith over the little trials it is so much easier to be victorious over the big ones.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Like water for my soul

Sometimes profound brilliance just spews out of me. =)

Like this morning while running with my friend Heather. As we usually do, our conversation bounced around more than a kid in a jump house. Near the end of our run I found myself telling her that some material I had recently read led me to believe that I need to drink more water. While it's great that I drink water before and after a run, I really need to make myself "in a perpetual state of hydration" - no joke, these were my exact words - by drinking water around the clock, and not just gulping it down when I'm going to run.

(Yes, I do realize at this point you're wondering when you're going to read the brilliance. And here it is...)

Isn't it that same way with our relationship with God? We know we need Him when things get hard. We might even thank Him when we survive rough times or something good happens. But what about on the days when nothing in particular is happening? We need a perpetual, constant relationship with Him too.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

No Stopping Any Time

Anyone love a challenge? I have mixed feelings. I've realized that I love accomplishing something new, but I really don't like doing something new.

Last week my running partner Heather and I decided we should run a hill to prepare ourselves for our race in San Francisco which will surely have some elevation changes. The hill which is actually less than 1/2 of a mile long could have easily been 10 miles long because I had only trained on the flats.

About half way up the hill and close to passing out, I had to laugh as I saw a "No Stopping Any Time" sign. I began to think, what would ACTUALLY happen if I sat down right now? Surely Heather, who had long passed me, would eventually notice I wasn't behind her, right?

At first I felt some guilt - the sign said no stopping and I had already reduced my speed to barely a walk and was seriously contemplating sitting down. But then I realized I hadn't sat down and despite my progress being greatly behind Heather's, I was doing my best and still moving!

So my message today is a simple word of encouragement. As I once heard a radio evangelist say, "When you're going through Hell, DON'T STOP!"

Friday, March 11, 2011

Overflowing Oatmeal

This morning as I cooked my oatmeal in the microwave it overflowed, leaving quite a mess for me to clean up. I tried to remove the bowl from the microwave, but it was hot and sticky, so I got napkins to grab the side of the bowl. Then I cleaned up what had spilled over into the microwave. This was a pretty easy task, but in looking at my bowl (which I had intended to take with me to eat on the way to work) I realized it was going to be a problem. The messy bowl no longer seemed suitable to go with me.

I seriously had a moment when I thought I might just abandon the whole thing - oatmeal and bowl - and start over, but then I realized what was on the inside could still be saved.

In our Wednesday Bible study we've been reading through Genesis. One of the comments that came up as we read the story of Adam & Eve through Noah was why God didn't just wipe out the human race and start over. We certainly gave Him plenty of reason and opportunities to do so. Ultimately, He looks at us like I did my oatmeal - able to be saved... with help from the Creator.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Popcorn and Bloody Noses

If you read the title to this blog, I'm sure you're wondering what popcorn and a bloody nose might have in common. And rightfully so, because in reality they have nothing in common. But here's what happened this morning:

My son Josiah has been sick for a while. And though he's been a pretty good sport about the coughing and the weak voice, he woke up this morning and said to me frailly, "Mommy, can I have popcorn for breakfast. Popcorn starts with a little p." How could I say no to that request? I really could not, especially since it seemed no less healthy than the Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal that was otherwise slated for him to eat.

By the time I got to work, my husband called to tell me that Josiah had gotten a bloody nose - an unfortunately genetic weakness he's inherited. As my husband was cleaning up the blood Josiah asked him, "Why does this happen to me?" And then he continued, "Is it because I eat popcorn?"

Poor Josiah! In his four year old mind this was a simple case of cause and effect. Though we got a good laugh out of it, I began thinking that I tend to oversimplify things like this too. When something bad happens I often trace it back to the last significant event, even asking God why! I've heard so many people ask why bad things happen to good people or why good things happen to bad people.

I have a feeling that God's answer is much the same as our's to Josiah: that's just the way it is sometimes.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Playing God with My Ant Friends

January 27, 2000

Dear Kim,

As I sit here in my little ant infested dormitory, I will tell you the same thing I told my best friend last night.

The longer I travel down the path of my life, the more I am torn in two directions. Half of me wants to run home to my childhood—with the security of things such as pudding with Nilla Wafers and bananas, Saturday morning cartoons, Cabbage Patch Kids, church with the whole family, or Sundaes on Saturday evenings. The other half of me wants to run into the frightening and exciting unknown—the harsh city, the solace of countryside, or the outskirts of town in the “hick-est” little nowhere ever. While I sometimes think I must choose, rationally I know that my life will probably be a combination of both. One of the most beautiful things I can think of is taking the joys of yesterday into tomorrow. I thank God that you are one of those joys: all the happiness of my life embodied in memories and the basic hope of tomorrow. I thank God even more that I have you, forever, no farther away than the local phone, computer, or post office. I too am always here for you.

Sometimes in the quiet of my college experience, I wonder just how all that is happening to me right now fits into the grand scheme of my life. I wonder if sometimes God looks at me like I look at these ants, screaming, “What are you doing? Why won’t you do what I say?” I, like my ants, have followed the crowd at times, chasing after some old sugary candy. If I keep this up, surely I will be lead into destruction, the same way my ants are going to get a whooping when I come back from work and classes.

Playing God with My Ant Friends,
Amie Sommars

Poem: Why I Understand Nuns

“Why I Understand Nuns”
circa 1999

I love Him because He didn’t steal my heart,
But rather asked gently, “Can I heal the hurting part?”
He said, “I’ll shower you with gifts—anything for you.
Just ask for what you want- that’s all you have to do.”
I am but an ugly rock standing next to Him,
But He says that I am the most precious kind of gem.
He says if I give Him my rags, torn and dirtied dark,
Then I will receive a sparkling robe, shining without a mark.
I tell Him I am tired from the battles I have fought.
He says, “I’ll give you strength, for this is how you’re taught.”
I say, “You will never understand me. You can’t see through my facade.”
He gently says, “ I love you, child, and that is why I‘m God.”

I say, “I am not worthy of having You to love.”
He says, “Take a look around you, look down and look above.
I created everything that you see and even more.
I am the reasons the flowers grow and the reason eagles soar.”
“But I, oh Lord, am not a bird. Nor, am I a flower.”
He says, “But you are a temple. And if you’ll allow, I’ll supply you power.”
I do not pretend to understand Him or the grace He shines on me,
And I do not pretend to think, my past He can not see.
I cry, “But my mind will not forget the memories that I’ve stored.”
He says, “I forgive you always, and that is why I’m Lord.”

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Last Words

The scripture is full of wisdom on the importance of using our words carefully. Proverbs, especially, is filled with this instruction. A few things we are told:
* Those who guard their lips preserve their lives, but those who speak rashly will come to ruin. (Proverbs 13:3)
* Through patience a ruler can be persuaded, and a gentle tongue can break a bone. (Proverbs 25:15)
* A person finds joy in giving an apt reply - and how good is a timely word! (Proverbs 15:23)

I was pleasantly surprised last night when I watched one of my favorite shows - How I Met Your Mother. It won me over from the very first episode with its contemporary comedy, but it seems of recent to have reached a level of enjoyment for me as there seems to be more heartfelt moments. Last night's episode dealt with the significance of your last words.

When it was over, I turned on Facebook - still emotionally numb to a certain extent - only to notice that a friend posted that her friend had died over the weekend. I went to his FB page to see what his final post was. I had to laugh when I read, "I don't wanna be a Pisces. Not that there's anything wrong with that." Do you think he would have chosen that to be his final post?

So, it really got me thinking: our words have such power. We can do so much good - or bad - with our words. I hope you come away from this random little blog with a gentler word to speak because we never know when it might be our last.

Monday, January 3, 2011

New. Year. Resolutions.

Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. If anyone thinks they are something when they are not, they deceive themselves. Each one should test their own actions. Then they can take pride in themselves alone, without comparing themselves to someone else, for each one should carry their own load. (Galatians 6:2-5, NIV)

The New Year: That delightful time when we make ourselves promises we don't expect to keep. Right!? I'm optimistic, so I'd like to believe that resolutions are made when we take a moment to "test" our actions and we see that we fail in some area. Good for us!

Unfortunately, we don't continue to work at these goals, for one reason or another. Laziness? Fear? Distraction? Excuses? All of the above, and then some!

What I keep discovering is that I have to chose to live the life I dream about - it's not about a year. I need to daily do what I want to be. If I want to be rich, I save money. If I want to be healthy, I eat well and exercise. This is not rocket science, and yet we all struggle with it.

Along with a whole list of other things, I want to be someone who is able to carry other's burdens and take pride in myself. It starts this new year, and more importantly, it starts today.