Go Deep #devotion

I just read an article about tears and that they are good for us because they open our hearts! Maybe this poem will make a clear visual:

Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; But a man of understanding will draw it out.

watering eye

I woke in burning pain today

the searing drew me to my knees

tears wash over even now

and I can only pray and plead

My heart heard  nudging from my Lord

“people are suffering all over the world

let pain wake you to the need

petition for the lost, your words I’ll heed”

I woke in burning pain today

I dropped sobbing to my knees

“Oh Lord children suffer it is true

they’ll burn alive without you!!! ”

Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; But a man of understanding will draw it out. 
Proverbs 20:5

heart in water

Should I focus on my own suffering or on that of others? The Bible says we will have trouble in this life but isn’t it what we do with the “suffering” that makes a difference? I was reminded as my pain has been escalating of  a time when I chose not to use narcotics to stem the tide. The pain would crash over me in the night and I decided I might as well pray. This went on for months (then years). I learned by praying for others that my pain would lessen and like an analgesic I would (eventually) fall back to sleep. These are troublesome times – Do we anesthetize our lives or do we walk on hot coals with fellow sufferers? May ours tears soften our hearts to hear the cries of those lost in the night…

“More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”

Romans 5:3-5

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”

Romans 8:18

“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. “

1 Peter 4:12

Sharing this with Godinterest today.

Catch a Wave #devotion #photography

girls in the sea

I tried to count the grains of sand

I got lost there were too many in my hand

I tried to count the hairs on her sweet little head

I made braids with ribbons instead

I made friends with a duck today

as I said “goodbye”, he flew away

I tried to touch a monarch butterfly

she became a rainbow in the sky

children join the waves in dance

hoping to catch a mermaid by chance

Butterfly1

There is so much in our world that delights and inspires. I am in awe of a God who knows how many grains of sand are in the ocean and how many hairs are on a little one’s head. It isn’t just knowledge of facts – He knows our inner being and cares for us in the high and low times.

Psalm 139:17-18
“How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them,
Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand.
When I am awake, I am still with you.”

1 John 3:1
“How great is the love the Father has lavished on us,
that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!”

Sharing with Poet’s United – The Poet’s Pantry today and Godinterest.

I just found Father’s Love Letter a beautiful site that is meant to encourage..

His Eye is on the Sparrow #sundaydevotion

Ah spring

fancy dresses are shaken out

girl’s eyes flutter there’s no doubt

waiting for the the band to begin

*

the dance floor full of hope

hard work of building complete

so the weary can get off their feet

moves  come naturally

*

fluttering wings of all sizes

white and yellow butterflies flit

bright red cardinal zip

nature energized by the sun

*

poppies, begonias, pansies

wave their fancy fans

like dowager aunts

they approve of the flurry

*

so many reminders

of springs now passed

new life here at last

makes everyone giddy

While I was planting my garden and enjoying the ritual of spring, I thought about the verses in the Bible that talk about birds and flowers. The birds don’t concern themselves with what they are to eat; they also have no need to practice or lay out a plan for their mating ritual.

The flowers don’t need to worry about their clothing but they also aren’t concerned with how and where they are planted.  They are confident, when it is time, that they will be watered, the sun will shine and they will grow.

Today I saw a bigger “value” to those verses: nature  doesn’t (even on dire days) plan or worry about the next ten years of wind, snow, sun, rain, hurricanes… They know they are cared for!!!

When my children were young and we were urban missionaries, the money we raised was enough to pay the rent and the utility bill. But what about food, bandaids, and clothing?

  • Each month we received anonymous certificates to buy groceries.
  • On occasion, I would find an envelope with money on my desk from a volunteer (paid for stuff like bandaids.)
  • The clothes for the children were hand me downs and my husband had plenty of clothes and shoes. I on the other hand had enough clothes to fit in a small luggage. I never thought “what will I do when my clothes wear out?”
    What I did notice, when we left ministry, was that all my clothes sprouted holes. I realized that clothes that are worn every single day rarely last for 10 years. A secret: I was never better taken care of then when I had nothing!!!

We need to be reminded that we have a God with great big loving hands who shelters us from more than we know and provides for us in unseen ways. Lean on Him when the days are stormy be thankful to Him when the days are good.

Luke 12:27-28

“Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; but I tell you, not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. “But if God so clothes the grass in the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, how much more will He clothe you? You men of little faith!

Psalms 103:13-18

“Just as a father has compassion on his children, So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him. For He Himself knows our frame; He is mindful that we are but dust. As for man, his days are like grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes.When the wind has passed over it, it is no more, And its place acknowledges it no longer. But the lovingkindness of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear Him, And His righteousness to children’s children, To those who keep His covenant And remember His precepts to do them.”

Job 38:41

“Who prepares for the raven its nourishment When its young cry to God And wander about without food?

Matthew 10:29-31

“Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. “But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. “So do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows.”

P.S.  All of the above applies to our needs. If the birds of the air decided they wanted steak rather than seed, they would be disappointed. If the flowers wanted to wear Vera Wang, they would be forlorn.

Sharing with Godinterest

Narrow is the way #devotion

posterized castle door

 desire to walk ground holy

feet caress  verdant grass

truth is for the taking

but there’s no way you can guess

wide open are the fields

the way you might traverse

but narrow is the passage

I’ve read it in a verse

your way in life is guided

there is a path to choose

pick your way now wisely

for eternity you can lose

He truly  is the way

The Father  he has deemed

our sinful wretched lives

through His are remade clean

The Pixie Path painted

“All who came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. “I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.…

John 10:8-10
“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.”

John 14:6

“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.”
Matthew 7:13

Reverse Thunder #devotion

storms end

 

I hear thunder in the distance

rolling onward like the waves

gaining power it surges  forward

and like a child I am afraid

flash and pounding ever stronger

seconds now and it will hit

dark the clouds and growing closer

blowing fragile tree to bits

it has stopped and hovers o’er me

a distinct voice of one I love

in the whispers it is calming

begging help from God above

*

Reverse Thunder

whispered prayers become a shout

God listens

 

I read an inspiring devotion about ‘Reverse Thunder’ and the power that prayer has. With our world in such tumult, we can turn our prayers into a reverse thunder – an energy that can be focussed in   fervent loving appeal.

 

In my distress I called to the Lord; I cried to my God for help. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came before him, into his ears.

Psalms 18:6

 

“Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.”

Colossians 4:2

“From the end of the earth I call to You when my heart is faint; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I. ”

Psalms 61:2

 Sharing this with GodInterest

Pick Me #devotion #spring #poetry

 

If you were a star

how would you stand out

among so many lights

If you were a snowflake

how would you reach gloved finger

to be caught in flight

If you were a firefly

how many others

would you have to out blink

if you one daisy in an ocean of fields

how could anyone know

if you were yellow or pink

what humans selecting 1s and 0s

compiling our value

what do they know?

The fragrant rose hopes

to be picked from above

fortunately God is a being of love

He never looks at us as one more thing

each of us more priceless

than the Hope diamond ring

The poem is silly but it conveys the fact that God knows: the name and voice of each star, He clothes each flower in the field, He knows when a bird falls, and He knows your needs (before you do.) Nature is so lovely to watch. Each day the birds come forth looking for food; Even in the winter there is food in our forest though the animals have to look harder for it. It’s there because God provides and He promises to do the same for us.

 

“Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”

Luke 12:7

“If then you cannot do even a very little thing, why do you worry about other matters?Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; but I tell you, not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these.”

Luke 12:26&27
Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?

Matthew 6:26

 

Sharing this early spring devotion with Godinterest.

Dry to the Bone #devotion #poetry #faith

desert rocks

A hand reaches up from the scorched earth

what life there was has been sucked dry

his lips can barely shape the words “Leper”

he once was young and alive

bounding like a lamb on green pastures

feet barely touched the earth for the glee

but somewhere upon the way

life took a horrible fee

it wasn’t all at once

leprosy of the heart is a slow disease

bit by bit the flesh fails

thirsting for what it can’t be

it clamors for more death

morality degrades and twists

eating the soul alive

each day vigor replaced with dust

even the desert has her moment

of color and vibrant day

you walk into the land of the forgotten

all there chose to fail and fade

*****

 

In Luke 17, there is a story of 10 lepers who are healed by Jesus. “Go, live life enjoy what you were losing,” The healer’s hands must have said.What he didn’t add, “Your leprosy is an external expression of the human condition.Without God, You will find yourself withering to dust again.” One of ten returned to praise the healer. Is it true then that only one in ten, on this earth, will thank God for his daily mercies? May it not be so for the desert is a dry,  life taking land.

“11 While He was on the way to Jerusalem, He was passing [a]between Samaria and Galilee. 12 As He entered a village, ten leprous men who stood at a distance met Him; 13 and they raised their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” 14 When He saw them, He said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And as they were going, they were cleansed. 15 Now one of them, when he saw that he had been healed, turned back, glorifying God with a loud voice, 16 and he fell on his face at His feet, giving thanks to Him. And he was a Samaritan. 17 Then Jesus answered and said, “Were there not ten cleansed? But the nine—where are they? 18 [b]Was no one found who returned to give glory to God, except this foreigner?” 19 And He said to him, “Stand up and go; your faith[c]has made you well.”

Luke 17:11-19

 

Wind Blown #devotion #poetry #photography

Between the panes it reaches

irrespective of my will

it howls in singular tone

ties my tongue, I feel ill

icy it tantalizing streaks

lookout for those to spill

through the woods it shrieks

and I cold and all alone

*

As we traverse life, there will always be those cold icy patches that reach out to trip us and at times we fall. In His grace, God picks us up and gives us refreshment maybe even some sunshine. Last year I fell on some nasty ice and had a bad break. The day I finally ventured out, I fell again spraining the remaining limbs. This winter I was afraid to go out if there was any snow or possible ice. I am learning to not be timid rather to be prepared with the right gear. Isn’t that how life is? A trial lays us flat and we want to just stay in the fetal position. We must prepare ourselves and bravely face each day.

 Psalm 23:4

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff they comfort me.”

James 1:2-8

“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. …”

 Philippians 4:6-7

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

More verses for trial filled days:

Part of the Whole #devotion #poetry #humanity

chains and people

Whether poor or rich, tall or short

very young or oh so old

you child are part

of the greater whole

in this spinning world

rushing out of control

man would extinguish

the birds that sing

destruction is such a waste

still we await

the coming spring

we are connected

on each other lean

remember that this God above

the designer of hope

something great called Love

 

I am reminded of some sweet moments as a nurse and teacher with the friends I had made.  An outsider could have considered us different: Our language and skin color was not the same but the radiance in our smiles was like an echo and our voices had a beautiful blend as we sang. Culture may mold us and hand us mores. But as my dear friend Hil would say, we are sisters all the same. As the watercolors of life streak and create a new color, “man” gets angry at the thought that a “oneness” could be the start of a new day.

As a chain gathers strength by being linked together,  we as people gain support as we clasp hands and work together.
“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.”

Ezekiel 36:26
“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”

2 Corinthians 5:7
“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

Revelation 21:4

 

What We Can’t See #devotion #photography #poetry

winter castle

There is beyond the winter

beauty beneath the snow

like a shivering bulb

we know there is spring

we cannot see its bud

nor force its opening

 the sun alone

can entice the bloom

there is a beauty beyond winter

we will shed this life’s pain

 perfect magnificence

 is held in secret

an eternal spring

will one day

open its gates to the sun

beckoning us home

rose budding

“But it is written ‘What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love Him…'”

1 Corinthians 2:9

 

We can neither see nor imagine the beauty of the place that God has fashioned for us. But we can on the weariest of days take comfort in the knowledge that such a place lies in wait just as the bulb that waits to open its face come spring. As you anticipate the warmth and beauty of spring, soak in the hope of Heaven!

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