Thursday, May 31, 2007

Stand in Awe

Greetings on this last day of May. I trust you've had a good day. Mine has been very good. It's end of the month, so bills need to be paid, as usual. Our weather can't decide if it wants to rain/shine/clouds, whatever. I guess it's fickle, just like me!
When I am out in nature, I marvel at the beauty that our loving Lord gives us to feast our eyes upon. The sky and it's blue, the vivid green of trees and grass. The clouds as they scud across the sky, being chased by wind that we only barely feel. Our Creator God must love us a lot. I call His nature: candy for the eyes and senses.
In my reading today I found a verse I haven't read for a very long time, but it jumped out at me, so I'll share it with you all. Ecclesiastes 5:7b. Therefore stand in awe of God. It got me thinking, do I stand in awe of Him? If so, in what ways?
One way is enjoying His nature. Another is by all the wonderful friends that He's brought into our lives, mine especially. There are ladies that in just a short time have nestled into my heart, bringing their special gifts for me to enjoy.
One calls to see how I am on a regular basis; just to chat. Another brings her frustrations, seeking what she should do. As I like to dish out advice, I'm ready, bring it on! Her special gift of mercy and service delight the Lord, and all who know her.
Another is special because I got to disciple her and she's like a daughter to me. Still another is a mom, working hard to live for Jesus and take care of her family. Her sweet smile warms my heart and talking with her is always a pleasure. Then there's the lady that I go to when I need my 'Betty fix' and she gives it by the bushel basket. Her wisdom is gold and her heart is the Lord's, completely.
Another we don't see as often, but not because she doesn't want to see us, but her life has taken wings and it flies her around the world. Her heart is tender toward the Lord, a special thing. One dear friend is a giver, of herself and things. She's always looking for ways to serve the Lord and I know He is delighted.
One more is a hoot because her questions are direct, she wants an honest answer and she's not afraid to ask tough questions. Her sense of humor is wonderful; we all get to enjoy her. One loves being a grandmother, just like me. Her 'grands' are far away, unfortunately. Her comments are good and her smile lights up the room when we're together.
The last lady is quiet, but her smile is precious and her heart is sincere. She's seeking Him in her quiet way and I know He's helping her through her days. I just remembered one more special friend. Her heart is so giving, caring and she's a prayer warrior, lifting me up to the Lord often. Our times together are sweet, but not often; she too has her responsibilities.
I stand in awe of our Lord who is so giving to me, friends that warm my heart just thinking about them. What I've shared, is a tiny bit of who they are; there's not enough room to write more here.
He knows what we need, when we need it and provides through many wonderful people who are receptive to being His ministers of grace. Sing the praise song: I stand in Awe of You and worship the Lord, right now, because He deserves it.

Standing in Awe of Him,

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

God of all comfort

Good Evening,
How was your day? Mine was good. Busy too. I talked with our son about gardening. He's a novice one and so we have lots to talk about. The kids helped me in the garden when they were younger, but really didn't take much interest other than the money they could get for pulling weeds. They didn't get rich, but I didn't get poor either and the garden was clean enough to discern weeds from produce.
It always delights me when the Lord gives me comfort, so I thought I'd share a few verses with you. Go to 2 Corinthians 1:3-7. Basically I'm going to concentrate on 3-5. Did you notice that it starts with praise to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ? Always, He should be the center of worship, praise and seeking.
I like that it tells us that He is the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort. When I see 'Father' that tells me that the one that can take care of me the most, is the one that gives the most comfort. Isn't that comforting? Sorry, I couldn't resist.
What does the word 'comfort' mean? As I checked out the dictionary I found this: to console. I looked up console and it says: to bring comfort in distress. That's a complete circle.
Do we need comfort if we're not distressed? I think not. So, when the Lord is bringing us comfort, it's because we need it, badly. But, He does bring it, when we need it. This is confirmed by verse 4: who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comofrt we ourselves have received from God.
It looks like we pass on what the Lord gives us. I've found this completely true. Many times through the years I've been able to give comfort to someone going through what I've already been through. God uses me to bring comfort to a hurting soul. How about you? Has He used you in this way? Do you pass on the comfort that He's given to you?
The Apostle Paul confirms that this happens to him. Verse 5 states at the end: so also through Christ our comfort overflows. I've seen this in action, in myself and through others. This leads me to two points. God is the source of all comfort and He wants us to comfort others.
So, have you comforted anyone lately? If so, did they really feel comforted by what you shared? Did you pray for them? Will you keep them in prayer? How will you spread around the comfort the Lord gives to you?

Spreading the comfort,

Monday, May 28, 2007

In Everything, Thanks

Dear All,
I trust your are all doing well and living for Jesus. I'm thankful for the rain we've had and the temps have been so nice. I like having windows open and without tons of dust blowing through. I'm not especially fond of dusting.
During our time in Czech, we had to have our van fixed a few times. The man who did this work lived a few kilometers from us. We'd drive there, leave the car and then catch a bus back home. When the van was ready we'd backtrack.
One of the very first times that we took the van there, I rode with Chuck. I was just a little better with the language than he was, so he wanted me to interpret (what a laugh). Anyway, when it was time to go home, we went to the bus stop. After looking at the schedule, we decided on the direct bus back to Zlin, our home.
A bus came along about 15 minutes after we got there. Because it wasn't the bus we wanted, I told the driver no. And we waited, and waited and waited. After about an hour, a bus comes along. Now, the time of the direct bus had come and gone, with no bus. So, I thought maybe this was the one we wanted. Wrong.
But, because we had been there waiting an hour already, we decided to take it instead. It was going to a town that we would have to pass through anyway and we knew we could catch a connection there.
We did finally get home, long after we were supposed to and our daughter was frantic. That was before cell phones. We didn't even have a computer. Sorry, I digress.
When I think about that time and the lesson learned, I think about I Thessalonians 5:18. I've used this passage before, but I want to concentrate on one word: everything. The New American Standard uses this word. The NIV uses' in all circumstances'. I like the 'everything' because it means I say thanks even in bad situations, when I don't feel like saying thanks, when I don't have a thankful heart or spirit.
But, as I read the rest of the verse: in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. His will for me/us. He wants us to give thanks, no matter what is happening or how I feel.
Why? Because it honors Him. He is Sovereign and He sometimes uses negative/hard things to teach us dependence on Him, to soften our hearts, to help us understand someone elses trouble or pain, or whatever reason.
As Sovereign Lord, He uses, sometimes allows, things to happend to us that aren't always pleasurable. But, what about the good things? Do you always say thank you to Him? Food for thought.

Thankful for you all,

Saturday, May 26, 2007


Good Morning,
As I was contemplating my blog today, I remembered something that Chuck and I witnessed when we were living in the Czech Republic.
We were driving through a town that was long and skinny. There was a creek rushing down the side of the road on one side and houses and shops on the other. On the other side of the creek were many houses hanging to the hill side.
As we were driving up a hill and around a curve, with the sun as a backdrop, we could see two boys coming down the hill. One boy was about 14 and he was pushing an old wooden wheelbarrow. In the wheelbarrow was another boy, similar in looks and just a little younger. His feet were hanging over the edge and his hands gripped the sides.
Both boys were laughing at their own antics and we could see that they were having a lot of fun. As we slowed the car and drove by them, we waved and as they waved back, we could see them laughing, enjoying seeing the smiles on our faces. Chuck and I talked about that situation for a long time, enjoying the memory.
One of the things that the image makes me think of is brotherly/sisterly love. In Psalm 133:1 it tells us: How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity! This Psalm is short, so read the whole thing to get the full context of the passage.
I like what it says because living in unity with your family, or your church family is very important to God. He reconciled the world to Him through our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He exhorts us to be reconciler's. The problem, is that we seem to cause more trouble than we do good.
I've decided that the reason we do this is because we want what WE want, not what's best for everyone. We don't like to compromise. We don't want to give up anything even if it helps the other person. How selfish is that.
Brotherly/sisterly love means that you want the best for them, you work toward that good. In the illustration I gave you, the older brother was pushing the younger and both were receiving fun, but the older had to do the work. We could tell by his face that he didn't mind at all. He was having fun too.
When we give of ourselves, we always receive. It also promotes unity and that's God's plan for all of us.

Working for unity,

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

What's Up Doc?

Well, this is a new blog and I'm trying to find my way around. I trust you'll all be patient with me as I learn something new.
Chuck and I have always been more than willing to have visitor's come, especially missionaries. When our children were little, any missionaries coming through were invited. We had room, their stories were entertaining and our kids liked to play with their's.
So, tonight when I found the verses I'm going to share, it reminded me of our inviting guests to stay. See Romans 12:12-13. After you have your Bible open, read them, then join me....
It would seem that verse 12 doesn't go with 13, but think about God's plans for your life. Don't they involve others? We also know, from experience, that when we are having a missionary or clergy to stay with us, there's always warfare; it's a given. But, it doesn't stop us. Why should Satan get the upper hand?
When it tells us to pray, or to be prayerful, that's a really good idea. We've found that prayer works in keeping the 'wolves' away from the door.
Then we get to verse 13. In some of the churches we've attended, people are fighting over who will get to have the missionary for meals, housing. In other churches it's a foreign concept and they avoid it like the plague. Bravo for the first and I'm so sorry you're missing out on all the fun for the second. The blessing's abound when we feed and house those the Lord brings to our home.
How often do you have guests for a meal? On a Friday night, Saturday, or maybe Sunday after church? In many churches that type of hospitality is practiced widely, much to every one's enjoyment. I'm not just talking about inviting friends and family, but people who we know, or have just met. Sounds scary, doesn't it? But the Lord tells us to do it.
So, try it, you might just like it. Invite someone and see how much fun you have.

Open invitation to our home,