Monthly Archives: February 2017

Hellth and Holeness

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With the high cost of therapy, who can afford to go crazy? What did people do with their anger, addictions, and angsts before psychology and psychiatry, before syndromes and labels? I really don’t know, but I suspect taking a bite from THAT fruit has resulted in knowledge both good and evil. I get depressed,obsessed, and possessed when life’s terra-firma shifts; when what’s solid becomes liquid and then vapor; when what is, is no more. I no nothing of serious mental illness, or maybe I’ve honed the art of denial, but I do know when I am beside myself, I mean REALLY beside myself, curled on the floor too weak to move, I cry out to the Lord. Not so much a cry as a whimper. I whimper His name, “Jesus…Jesus…Jesus…” 

It’s not pretty, but it’s real, and He who dwells in what’s Real and True, finds me.

Like a mother hearing the cry of her child wrestling a nightmare, Jesus quietly soothes, “I am here, I am here, ‘I AM…'”and holds me in His very buff “Everlasting Arms”.
When I fall into the well of despair, the Well-ness and Hole-ness Specialist is at the bottom to catch me. And if I’ll listen and learn, He’ll makes me well and whole. 
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When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be healed?” John 5:6 

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“And He shall be called, Wonderful Counselor…”

Isaiah 9:6

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“He makes me lie down…He restores my soul…” Psalm 23

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I waited patiently for the LORD to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along. He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what he has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the LORD. 

Oh, the joys of those who trust the LORD, who have no confidence in the proud or in those who worship idols. Psalm 40:1-4

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(Read all of Psalm 40)

Just Your Garden-Variety

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When I grow up, I wanna be a garden hose. My garden hose is nothing to look at. It’s faded green, it’s been run over more than once, it sits in the dirt, and ants use it as their interstate highway. It’s the poster child for “not the sharpest tool in the shed.” But when the kinks are straightened out, the faucet’s turned on, water gushes through, and life springs forth. 

I want to be God’s garden hose. All He is, flowing through all i am to this love-parched earth.

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We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. 2 Corinthians 4:7

Jesus replied, “If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.”  John 4:10 NLT

Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart. John 7:38 NLT

When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in Him… John 7:39 NLT

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P.S. If I WAS a hose, I’d change my name to Anna:  Hose Anna. (This just came to me and I couldn’t resist.)

God in the Mundane

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“The LORD had visited His people by giving them bread”. (Ruth 1:6) The Lord works very practically, often in the mundane things of life. Sometimes I’m so focused on the great things He does, that I miss His “visits” to me in the everyday stuff, and forget to thank Him. 

P.S. Thank you Lord, for visiting your people with coffee this morning.

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Trust in the Lord with all your heart; don’t lean on your own understanding. In ALL YOUR WAYS (course of life) ACKNOWLEDGE HIM, and He will direct your path. Proverbs 3:5,6

Personal Climate Control

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People outside the church are rebellious, apathetic, and self-absorbed; while people inside the church are rebellious, apathetic, and self-absorbed. 

This isn’t the way it should be, but it’s nothing new. The climate of the church back in Samuel’s day was cloudy with a chance of judgement- 100% chance. The climate hasn’t warmed much. The outlook can be downright depressing, and yet…God is calling. He called Samuel, but though Samuel served in the church, “Samuel did not yet know the LORD, and the word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him.” (1 Samuel 3:7) Yet God kept calling, and eventually Samuel got the message. Samuel could’ve found plenty of reasons not to serve the Lord; his mentors were doing a pretty lousy job of it. My focus can not be on what the rest of the world -or the church- is doing; the question is, “What am I doing?” He’s calling, He will keep calling. May our response be as Samuel’s when he finally picked up, “Speak, Lord, your servant hears”. 
“That is why the Holy Spirit says, “Today when you hear his voice, 

8 don’t harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled, when they tested me in the wilderness. 

9 There your ancestors tested and tried my patience, even though they saw my miracles for forty years. 

10 So I was angry with them, and I said, ‘Their hearts always turn away from me. They refuse to do what I tell them.’ 

11 So in my anger I took an oath: ‘They will never enter my place of rest.'”[fn]

12 Be careful then, dear brothers and sisters.[fn] Make sure that your own hearts are not evil and unbelieving, turning you away from the living God.”

Perfectly Imperfect

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Kneeling on the kitchen chair and bent low over the table, our young son Johnny labored intently, designing a cloth banner for Valentine’s Day. As he practiced his newly acquired writing skills, his tongue directed every move of the crayon clenched in his fist. Later, grinning with satisfaction, he held up his finished work. In bold block lettering, the banner read:                “Gob is love”

 The fact that he goofed on the lettering did not make this statement any less true. Nor did it in any way detract from his heart’s intent. In fact, his feeble attempt was all the more endearing.

 Likewise, our deficient endeavors to love God are cherished by Him. God does not require perfect love. He alone IS perfect love, and He fully delights in our demonstrations to love Him back; as backward as those attempts may be.

“He has pity on the weak and the needy, and saves them.”           Psalm 72:13

“But God chose the foolish to shame the wise, he chose what is weak to shame the strong”               1 Cor. 1:27

Jesus said, “My grace is sufficient for you, my power is made perfect in weakness.”                                        2 Cor. 12:9