God's Word for Today

Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Power of a Simple Question

Question from Internet Cafe'

May 17 - What is one habit, negative pattern, or sin that has been passed down your family line from generation to generation that you do not want to pass down to your own family line? What steps are you taking to make sure the habit, pattern or sin is not repeated in your own family? (View Post)

I can probably count on both my hands the number of times we went to church when I was growing up. It simply was not a priority in my family’s life. I have often thought about that time as I have begun my own family. When I think about this question, about the one habit or negative pattern or generational sin that has been passed down from generation to generation, my thoughts wander to years of dysfunction that a divorce brought into my young life. I think of the continuous struggle that my mother had to just put food on the table for us and I recognize that taking us to church was probably way down on my mother’s list of necessary things. In any event we did not go to church.

There was a very similar trend in my husbands upbringing as well. Although he was raised in a two parent family it was as if he was raised by a single mother given the level of un-involvement his father took in his life. His military service and then subsequent sales job after his discharge kept him away from the home on a very regular basis. Again the demands of just getting by from day to day as well as 4 other siblings left little time or inclination for perusing a spiritual foundation by either of his parents.

We simply had no clue.

Like most parents, when we had our first child we felt that if we wanted to be responsible parents then the right thing to do was to take our son to church. I must confess that in the beginning it was done merely out of my prideful desire to be “Mother Earth” and win brownie points in the “I’m a Good Mom” book. I must also confess that I was also motivated by a very strong desire to attempt to do a better job of maintaining a strong and lasting marriage than my parents had done. I did not want to pass that legacy of dysfunction on to my children.

When I walked down the isle with my husband I had no frame of reference for what a good wife was. He had an equal lack of knowledge for what a good husband was supposed to look like. I can state without reservation that we traveled down some very rocky and tearful roads, but this past May we celebrated our 26 wedding anniversary.

That pattern of dysfunction has been broken. My children will know what a true marriage looks like. My daughter will know what qualities make a good husband by the example that her father has set for her. Both my children have had the foundation of the love of Christ since the day of their birth and when they are old they will not turn from it.

It was that beginning struggle as I learned how to be a growing and mature Christian that has brought me to this place of faith. It started with a selfish desire to be “A Good Mom” and ended with God’s unfailing grace and mercy. He wiped away the years of dysfunction and heartbreak and gave both my husband and me a clean slate from which to build our marriage and our family.

On a recent women’s retreat I attend our focus was looking at the legacy we have. I have to confess that I had a very difficult time with this concept. With the exception of my wonderfully strong and faithful grandmother the Christian legacy was completely absent from my upbringing. What I did realize is that the very nature of passing down a legacy has to begin somewhere.

It began 26 years ago when my husband and I in our ignorance took vows before a God we did not know and began a life. We took our first few steps down that path of the legacy we will leave. God had mercy on our ignorance and our indifference and gently (and sometimes not so gently as well) lead us to a place of yielding over to His authority. We now have a marriage and family rooted in the love of Christ.

With each bedtime prayer we say, with each blessing over a meal, with each Sunday worship service, with every mission trip, with each act of compassion and forgiveness that legacy is being laid. Every time my daughter wakes to find my bible on my lap and my head bowed in prayer she see that legacy.

The generational dysfunction is broken and the negative patterns of behavior are put to rest.

Each day gives me the opportunity to build upon that legacy.

Each day I have the privilege of growing and living for Christ.

Praise God!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

She played the Harp

I have had the opportunity to wait with friends in hospital waiting rooms on several occasions. However as I sat with friends and family members yesterday we were pleasantly surprises with the arrival of a woman pushing an interesting looking cart. My curiosity was piqued as I saw her approaching awkwardly maneuvering her cart. Upon this cart she had a small harp. It was anchored in place with what appeared to be a bicycle rack and jutting up from the base was a music stand made from what looked like an odd assortment of plumbing apparatuses. I comment to a friend that it rather looked like an invention from a Dr. Seuss story book.

She took a few short moments to properly position her self and her harp and then began to play.
We continued to share conversation and wait for the surgery to be over, but there was the wonderful undertones of the soothing harp music playing in the back ground.
I thought to myself that this was a rather a unique experience, the harp music turned what can be a very stressful experience into a soothing and even enjoyable experience.
She played for about an hour and then she quietly exited, I can only assume to move on to other areas where waiting was going on.

I can only assume that this woman was a volunteered, and I never saw her again once she moved on from where we were seated. The music she played made the experience of waiting soothing and even beautiful, and I wanted to acknowledge her presence and her contribution to our time of waiting.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

My Seven Days

My missionaries returned home today.

In thinking about my week I have to say that the opportunity to spend seven whole days alone in my house was a unique experience.

  • I had total control of the remote.
  • I left my cloths on the floor.
  • I never cooked, not even once!
  • I did not load or unload the washing machine or dryer.
  • Went the entire week with out having to take out the trash.
  • Found joy in watching the blue birds in my back yard.
  • Opened the doors to the Dacula Ornithology Research Center (How much of a D.O.R.C. am I…..HA HA)
  • I did not vacuum or dust!
    OK, I did dust, but that was only because when I moved the furniture in the sun room to set up the observatory for the D.O.R.C. I was horrified at the layer of dust on the floor under the wicker love seat. In the pursuit of science I deemed it necessary and made the sacrifice and went to get my floor duster. (Bummer)
  • I only had to make one unplanned trip to the grocery store. I ran out of coffee, a necessary requirement in order to avert a disaster.
  • By Thursday my dishwasher was finally full enough to run a cycle.
  • I started reading a new book.
  • Wrote on my blog.
  • Read other people’s blog’s
  • Made myself egg salad sandwiches. A real treat, I never make it because no one but me will eat it.
  • I watched one good movie, one OK movie and one horrible movie.
  • Completed the rough draft on a book project! (OMG, now what do I do!)
  • Wrote another devotional, (another project in the works)
  • Had a brief (and unexpected) visit from my Beloved, A.K.A. my DS the rebel.
  • Prayed with my accountability sisters.
  • Met a friend for breakfast.
  • Had dinner at one of my favorite restaurants. Comfort food, an open faced meatloaf sandwich with mashed potatoes and gravy. Yum!!!!!!
  • The most strenuous activity of the week was mowing the lawn. This I did out of compassion and love as I did not want my husband to return home to find a chore waiting on him. The things we do for love!
  • I saw a hummingbird in my new back yard for the first time today.
  • Had a revelation that Special K and Rice Crispies make the same snap crackle pop sound when the milk is poured on.

In the next few hours I will be restoring some order, picking up the things that in my freedom I let lay, giving my house the once over and trying to decide what to cook for dinner. I think I can remember how.

I can confidently state that having a week to your self is a wonderful experience, at least it was for me.

I can highly recommend it.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Pray for "Great Things"

From “Streams in the Desert” on June 5, 2008

As I opened my small devotional book this morning and read the few short paragraphs some of the words kinda flew off the page and whacked me in the face.

ISA 7:10 Again the LORD spoke to Ahaz, 11 "Ask the LORD your God for a sign, whether in the deepest depths or in the highest heights."

taken directly from today's devotion

“We must continue to pray and “wait for the Lord” (Isa 8:17), until we hear the sound of his mighty rain. There is no reason why we should not ask for great things. Without a doubt we will receive them if we ask in faith, having the courage to wait with patient perseverance for Him and meanwhile doing those things that are within our power to do.”

I have to say that each morning as I lift my son up in prayer I don’t think I am necessarily praying for great things to happen.

Right now I am mainly focusing on prayer for his physical safety, and no grandchildren to spring forth from his romping’s. I also pray for God to show up in his life and get his attention, which when it happens will be a great thing.

But when I read these few sentences I had a bit of a revelation. It was the “meanwhile doing those things that are within our power to do.” This for me gives me the renewed energy to continue each day and persist with lifting up this situation everyday.

I take comfort in the knowledge that many great men all had there time wandering. I just finished a book by Ruth Bell Graham, she diligently prayed for her son Franklin who was a prodigal and this gives me great comfort.

So in addition to praying for God to have that perfect balance of protection, this is so hard because I do not want to hinder God in the process that He will use to bring my son back, but as his mother I don’t want anything bad to happen to him. It is like trying to balance my prayers on the edge of a razor. But now I am also going to be praying that the "Great Thing" that my son can accomplish be revealed to me and to him and begin to pray about that as well.

To completely change the subject a bit.

I have to share with you all a brief update from the mission field. It has been so sweet because most days I will get a very brief phone call from my daughter. She doesn’t have much to say, other that it is really hot and that things are going will.

She called me this morning as they were on their way to the work site. They are constructing desks for the school house. They are now in the process of painting them. My DD made comment that the primer they had used the day before did not come off of her arm. Oh the hazards of working in the mission field. I am thankful that this major catastrophe, in the eyes of a thirteen year old, which I am sure has put a huge damper of her sense of style to have primer stains all over her hand and arms.

In any event I look forward to hearing her voice each day and I find it very sweet that she thinks enough to want to give me a call.

Even at .95 cents a minute it is worth it.

It is good to be missed.

God is good!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Exclusive Look into New Reasearch Facility

Today is a banner day in the life of the newly established Dacula Ornithology Research Center. Later today in a press release they plan to share vital information with the general public regarding their ground breaking scientific findings.

However this exclusive preview is being brought to you, the ever faithful blogging community with the exclusive permission of the director of the institute, who is herself a member of the blogging community. Her desire to share these scientific findings on their in-depth study of the Blue Bird (Eastern Bluebird, Sialia sialis) is to date one of the proudest moments of this newly formed research facility.

As a result of their highly scientific and ground breaking research techniques they were able to acquire this astounding footage of the blue birds in its natural habitat. What you are witnessing is the results of hours of arduous effort and patience by the research director’s diligence as well as her tireless effort for the pursuit of scientific advancement.

As of 6:45 Eastern Standard Time this morning on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 the D.O.R.C. can confirm that a pair of Blue birds have kissed and made up and have begun setting up house at the main research headquarters.

In a rare glimpse into the workings of the research facility these photographs were obtained of the observatory of this facility. These never before seen photos give you a rare glimpse into the highly scientific and state of the art research facility.

The director wants to assure the blogging community that she will remain vigilant and report all the lasted and most current developments as soon as they become available.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

To Squidgy or not to Squidgy ….that is the question.

No deep or profound spiritual truths tonight, just a bit of a dilemma, sotrta!

I have to briefly share with you my internal dilemma. If you have been reading my blog then you will know that I am on a mini me vacation as my DH and DD are out of town on a mission trip. I have been enjoying myself immensely and indulging my every whim, mostly. However tonight as I prepared to take my shower I was presented with a rather unique dilemma.

You see my DH is a bit of a neat freak. In fact he is a much better housewife that I am. He can clean better that any one I know. I could quite possible go the rest of my life and never push a vacuum or mop ever again and live quite contentedly.

So here was my dilemma. Since we have moved into our new house we have in our master bathroom a separate shower as well as a bath tub. This shower has these clear glass doors. This was a slight flaw in the house but I was willing to overlook this in favor of my nice bright large kitchen. Well my hope is that it we will eventually replace the wonderfully awful clear glass with a much more attractive as well as camouflaging frosted glass.

Showering behind a clear glass door is rather like showering in front of an open window. I have learned to live with it so far. However with the clear glass come the inevitable nasty water spots. Now as I said my husband being the obsessive compulsive (God Love him and me too) placed a squidgy in the shower and we faithfully squidgy the doors down after every shower this insuring that the water spot get wiped away.

Can I tell how much I hate having to squidgy my shower doors? I am sure it was a man that deiced that clear glass door in a shower was a good idea, but in any even as I stepped in the show this evening a thought occurred to me.

I am here all by my little old self. I can do what ever I want. I can throw caution to the wind and step out of the shower and leave the squidgy in its little basket along with my shaving cream and razor. I pondered my bathing moral dilemma as I washed my hair.

To squidgy or not to squidgy that is the question. Weather it is nobler to consider the needs of my husband or step from the shower leaving the water spot to drip and dry.

What would you do????

An Ornithologist I’m not.

I have to share the latest bit of excitement at my house. As some of you will remember from a few weeks ago I wrote post about the Blue birds that were courting in my back yard. I was so excited with the flurry of activity and animated swooping and calling back and forth they did. I was looking forward to the possibility of a tiny blue bird family setting up house right outside of my sun room window. My excitement was short lived as for the flurry of activity only last but a few days. I was very disappointed.

Well much to my great excitement, it seems that the love story has been rekindled. I am not sure if this is the same pair of blue birds, but I think it is. Quite possible they had a lovers spat and took a break from each other to borrow from an episode of “Friends” but I was very happy to see that the nest building activity has stated back as of a few days ago.

The interesting thing to watch is that both the male and the female are participating in this activity. They will alternately take turns delivering to the tiny house small amounts of nesting material. One after the other. It is fascinating to watch.

I wait with anticipation for more to happen each morning. As I did before I have set up my tripod in the sun room. I have moved all the wicker furniture away from the window, which makes for an attractive road block as the furniture is all piled up in front of the entrance to the living room. But this is science folks, interior design needs to take a back seat to my pursuit of ornithological adventures.

I have been diligently trying to capture a few seconds of this nest building on video. The first day I was unsuccessful in trying to capture them on video. No matter how slowly I moved my approach to the window send then scurrying away.

This afternoon after yet another morning of dissapointing attempts to capture the nest building on video I had a sudden burst of desperation, brilliance or just maybe I was grasping at straws. I have draped several dark sheets across the windows and closed most of the blinds across the back of my house.

This very scientific approach has worked (Sort of) and I have been able to capture a short few second of the papa bird inspecting the handy work on the interior.

I will try to remain vigilant, however sitting in a chair in my sun room looking thought a dark blue sheet at a slightly swinging bird house for several extended minutes is slightly less boring that watching paint dry.

But hey it keeps me out of trouble and gives me something to do beside turn the television on.

Anyway I just wanted to report that apparently these two love birds resolved there differences and have decided to make a go of it in the birdie world. I wait with anticipation to see what the fruits of there birdie union will bring forth.

Is God cool or what.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Another Just Because

This one is a bit closer to me, really pretty dead on, it's a bit scary!

You Are a Plain Ole Cup of Joe

But don't think plain - instead think, uncomplicated

You're a low maintenance kind of girl... who can hang with the guys

Down to earth, easy going, and fun! Yup, that's you: the friend everyone invites.

And your dependable too. Both for a laugh and a sympathetic ear.

Just because

Your Ice Cream Personality:

You like to think of yourself as a fairly modest person. And it's true that you don't talk yourself up... but you're also pretty happy with who you are.

You are incredibly cautious. You rather miss out on something than make a mistake. No one would ever call you wild... but they would call you responsible.

You are a fairly open minded person with a wide range of tastes. You are quite accepting of unusual ideas and people.

You tend to have a one track mind. You prefer not to multitask.

You can be a big dramatic and over the top sometimes. You are bold in every way

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