Tuesday, December 22, 2009


This season, the season of lights, is a beautiful time for reflection. A time for enjoying life. A time for enjoying people. A time for enjoying....
The music, the focus, is on triumph, fun, giving, laughing, playing, family, friends, just enjoying...
It is the brightest time of the year...it sparkles. The heavens glitter, the earth glitters, people glitter, everything around us...glitters!
And it is all a reflection of the greatest light ... the love of GOD.

And that's all I have for now....

... giving voice to those with none...

Saturday, November 7, 2009

An Autobiography of a Love Affair Between Me and GOD

It's been a long time since the last entry....but who cares, really? This is for me. I don't believe anyone else reads this except my sweetie. But it is out there, just in case..........................

Recently, Max and I were talking about blogging and how much fun it is. He even became inspired and started his own. It will be around for our children when we pass on. That's one thing. As a child who has been missing her parent for 29 years now, I know how much I would cherish any writings my father left me, if he had left me any. But, alas, he did not. So, I have to rely on the old memory banks. Luckily, pictures are worth a thousand words! But, I want my children to have more than just their memories.....I want them to have a piece of my heart. I have a special leather journal with significant quotes, thoughts, and excerpts of writings that are so eloquent that I would not even dare to alter, even with my thoughts regarding them. They stand on their own merit, and the kids can enjoy things that have meant something to me. And yes, the grandbabies as well.

But, yes, there is always a but somewhere out there waiting for insertion........ obviously the most important thing to me during my entire life ~ oh how I love saying that! ~ is my relationship with my GOD.....all of Him. And that's where this idea for an autobiography came into being. I have led a very interesting life. And the key word is lived. So, I will begin this autobiography....it will not be written here, but excerpts from time to time will appear.

This morning I simply say:
"Bless the LORD oh my soul! Bless His Holy Name!"
Psalm 103 is one of the dearest scriptures to me. It has carried me over the past several years; it blesses me to bless the LORD......it lifts me up.....it improves my outlook.....it gives me strength....because I honor Him Who is the source of my strength.
As I work daily with people whose strength wanes, I appreciate what little I have left. And I enjoy understanding that I also have the option to rebuild more strength.
Oh BLESS the LORD....oh my soul!!

In His Love.....

...giving voice to those with none....

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Face of GOD

I just finished a devotional post from a pastor who has been a pastor to us for many, many years now.....virtual, but as real (more so) than many we have often served under. He speaks truth without apology, and his life has been an unwavering and self-sacrificing example of his faith for as long as I've known about him, since about oh....age 14, 15? F0und out about him when his book, "The Cross and the Switchblade" was released. It rocked my world, for sure! So, the words of my "virtual pastor" follow:

“One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after” (Psalm 27:4). King David knew there had to be more to knowing God; he sensed there was something of the Lord he hadn’t obtained, and he would not rest until he found it. He said, in short, “There is a beauty, a glory, an excitement about the Lord I haven’t yet seen in my life. I want to know what it’s like to have uninterrupted communion with my God. I want my life to be a living prayer. Only that will see me through the rest of my days.”

The face of God is his likeness, his reflection. In answering the cry of David’s heart to have intimacy with him, God said, “Seek ye my face.” David’s response was, “Lord, when you said, ‘Seek my face,’ my heart leapt in response.” “My heart said unto thee, Thy face, Lord, will I seek’” (Psalm 27:8).

“Learn of me. Search my Word and pray for understanding through the Spirit, so you can be like me. I want your life to reflect my beauty to the world.”

This was not merely a call to prayer; David had already been praying seven times a day. In fact, David’s prayers are what created this passion in him to know the Lord. No, this call from God was to hunger for a lifestyle that totally reflects who Jesus is.

Today, when God says, “Seek my face,” his words have greater implications than at any other time in history. With all that is going on in the world around us, how should we respond? When David was surrounded by a host of idolaters, God said, “Seek my face.” And we do it for one purpose: that we may be like him! That we become his express image, so that those who seek the true Christ will see him in us."

This is my earnest plea.....LORD....let people see and hear and feel Jesus in me!

Amen....so be it!

. . . giving voice to those with none . . .

Monday, August 31, 2009

Delight ...the commissioning

Just below is the "commissioning" prayer we said over one another at the close of this weekend's conference with Beth Moore as we dug into Psalm 37. I just had to post it here....for posterity if for no other reason. But my prayer is always that some pilgrim will just wander thru this blog on the way to something else, or nothing else, and that there will be a little blessing waiting here for her/him. I have so much more to say in regard to the Bible study, but words escape me at the moment. My heart is so full and I am not finished processing quite yet. When I am.....it'll appear here!

"My Dear Sister. . . God has not overlooked you. . . . He has not ignored you. . . He hears every petition, And intimately knows The heart beneath it. Give Him full access To all your longings. . . Pray every single day To become a person who delights in Him. When it(that delight) seems to disappear, Remember to check your JAW. . . Are you jealous? Are you angry? Are you worried? Roll it all on Jesus . . . He's strong enough to carry it . . . Big enough to handle it. Trust God with all your heart! Now leave this place - And go into the world - And do some GOOD!"

. . . giving voice to those with none . . .

Sunday, August 23, 2009

music and waves

In the midst of watching "The Soloist" I am reminded of the similarities between the music of instruments made by human hands, and the music in ocean waves made by the hands of GOD. Each has the immense power and capability of soothing the soul. Each has the capacity to heal. Each provides us something that we, as mortal beings simply cannot live without.....rhythm. This rhythm moves within us in unique ways - the beat of a heart, the movement of our respirations, the motility of our gut, the firing of neurons enabling thought or feeling or memory processing or the regulation of our autonomic nervous systems allowing us the boom boom boom of our hearts, lungs, kidneys, and etc. Both are in a water based environment, for even music is fluid in its action. Its waves of sound float on the air in much the same way as droplets of water float as air born spray in the form of rain or snow or hail.
All this glory wrapped up in scenes of the most base of human conditions . . . homelessness. Nothing is more raw than the observation of human behavior in the midst of survival mode. It wraps around my heart like a tight fitting glove, and is something that pulls at my heart strings in much the same way as a celloist moves his bow across the strings. I miss working in benevolence ministry. It looks as if it may be time to engage again. It is time to release the music in me to provide some relief, albeit temporary, to the pain of living.

. . . giving voice to those with none . . .

Monday, August 17, 2009

By the Sea

Yoga by the ocean . . . standing in the midst of the waves as they wash over you under the moonlight . . . breathing . . . deeply breathing . . . clearing the mind of all that is not here or now . . . basking in the light of a hot sun . . . feeling the sand melt beneath your feet and move as you move . . .
These are some of the greatest joys in life to me. Days spent in relaxation and rest . . . focusing on what is truly important in life . . . and letting go of what is not.
GOD reminds me that "clearing the mechanism" (my new favorite relaxation saying I adopted from the movie For Love of the Game) gives me that clarity of vision and thought that allows me to receive what He desires to share with me every day. I do not need to miss another day of heavenly download.
Today, it is enough to relive that moonlit sky, feel the waves wash over me and breathe.

. . . giving voice to those with none . . .

Sunday, August 9, 2009

4:8 my thoughts....

There are times when we have days of great downpour not only from weather (I simply love summer thunderstorms!), but spiritually as well. Today has been one of those days....just greatness all around. And I'm loving that there was absolutely no need to leave the house for a single solitary thing. Thank You, Jesus, for left over pizza. And by the way....this new Pizza Hut to the edge pizza rocks big time!

The Bible study I have been in this summer is a lovely one dealing with our thoughts - presented in a very creative way by Jennifer Rothschild - "Me, Myself and Lies." Today I learned how to choose to "4:8 my thoughts." Very nifty!

" . . . whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise . . . think on and take account of these things . . . fix your mind on them."
Philippians 4:8

I've known for many, many years that our words have power and we should take care what we say. I've also known that our words come from our thoughts . . . our hearts. I have totally loved drilling down this summer to the control panel of my thought life (aka the "thought closet") and dealing with the real nitty gritty of this part of my life. I love accountability!
I'll close this blog with a lovely tale that Jennifer included in the study when we looked at the woman "with the issue," what she thought about it, and what she did about it. Very, very cool!

"Once upon a time, in a faraway land, there was a desperately unhappy woman who talked to herself.
She might have said any number of things. She might have told herself to cheer up, to walk on the sunny side of the street, to whistle while she worked, or to simply accept her lot in life. She might even have told herself that her problems were illusions; she was really healthy and whole.
But those aren't the sort of things she said when she spoke to her soul. What she did say led her to an act of faith more daring than anything she could have imagined. When this woman talked to herself, it initiated an encounter that brought immediate healing to her body and soul. It was all because of what she had in her thought closet during one of the most important conversations of her life. She told herself the truth, and that led her staight to Jesus. May you be that woman."

May you be that woman.

As the sun reappears in a beautiful, fluffy cloud filled sky after a cleansing rain . . .

. . . giving voice to those with none . . .

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Celebration and Joy in Darkness

I tried to post this yesterday but there was simply too much interference. I like to get things out as they are fresh. I mean, who likes stale bread, really, except maybe ducks. Moving forward......
Over the past few years I have been more than a little surrounded by grieving . . . true, unsullied, honest grieving. There have been more funerals attended than I ever imagined as I grew up that I would. Some touched us more deeply than I ever imagined possible. Knowing full well at a deeply personal level the full force of grief through the loss of my father and my son, it now hits me harder than ever when people I care deeply for also walk that path through the "valley of shadows."
This past week two of my staff suffered deep losses - one, her father; the other, her son. Yesterday morning I entered deep intercession for Cassie, not even being fully aware of many details, just the full force of her loss and the loss of that entire family hit me spot on. And this was part of my prayers:
We were never meant to experience this shearing away of loved ones. We were never meant to experience death . . . it is a most unfortunate piece associated with the fall of mankind from the Garden. When GOD created us, He meant for us to live in that wonderful fullness of relationship in a perfect place on this earth with Him. We were never to know distance from Him, we were never to want, hurt, feel sadness or loss of any kind . . . never, never, never. We were never meant to experience sickness or pain, or anything negative. And the fact that we have hurts Him far more than it could ever hurt us. Really."
So....once again, I was off to a funeral. I have experienced many .... some real snoozers, some so very touching and some true celebrations of worship, praise and the person's life. This time it was a true celebration of Stephen's life and a time of true worship and praise. I was the cream in the oreo cookie....and I loved that! I have to hand it to some communities and cultures ..... they really have it going on. And they have maintained a dignity and closeness that the rest of us seem to have forgotten in this world gone mad. Every person who shared did so after honoring the house and the dignitaries and leadership there. They give honor to one another. And they share without restraint. The congregation does not sit by idly either . . . this is an interactive time of worship . . . during the speaking, during the music, during the prayers . . . and we all walked as one. That was a most honest and refreshing expression of grief and understanding of what's really going on in this world.
All glory and honor and praise to The King!

. . . giving voice to those with none . . .

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Nigeria to Me!

Well.....I've never been one to doubt that GOD will grant me the desires of my heart. He's proven Himself much too faithful to leave me even the tiniest smidgeon of doubt. From my earliest memories, I have carried a love for Africa in my heart. Africa and India...the two places on earth that I am continually drawn in my spirit and have the most intense love for....it amazes me! Despite my wants and wailings, the LORD has never allowed me to go to Africa...in the flesh. But I have been there in my dreams, my thoughts, my heart. Now, He, in the wonderful ways that only GOD can pull off, has brought Africa to me.
As a child, we had family friends who were missionaries in Africa, Nigeria and Kenya to be precise, and I loved to sit and listen to their stories, cherished the gifts they brought to our home, and loved all things that were mysteriously Africa to me. As I grew, I constantly looked for opportunities to seek out people who had been there and lapped up their tales as a thirsty man does water.
At my current place of employment, there are several nurses and aids who are native Nigerians. I am in heaven! I love to just sit and listen to them speak....about anything! The musical lilt of that accent....I can never get enough. And I have developed a friendship with them. One beautiful lady and I have become friends, and she is a beautiful, beautiful soul. This past weekend I was invited to join in at her church for a series of special meetings. The speakers were all from - Ta-Da! - Nigeria! I was in heaven!
It never ceases to amaze me the passion that Christians from anywhere but here have for Jesus. There is no shame, no apology, no compromise....just pure passion and love. Such grace that blows me away! The depth in simplicity....the beauty in just loving on Him and sharing that love with one another.... We do not need slick productions to worship. As a matter of fact, I think we do more harm than good with them. It distracts from that which is most important .... hearing HIS voice.
God love you, my Nigerian friends. I have been so honored to worship with you! I can hardly wait for the next opportunity!
There is a song that I have been wrapped in for the past couple of months or so. It was on a free CD that the Vineyard church we visited gave us....what a lovely gift and what a blessing it has turned out to be. The LORD has spoken to me so often when I worship with it and it has become very, very special to me. I close with these precious words of worship:

Jesus, You're more than a friend ... Jesus, You're more than my heart could ever express. Your love and Your grace never fail me ... You're merciful touch always heals me ... You bring joy to my soul. Joy to my soul.


. . . giving voice to those with none . . .

Sunday, June 21, 2009

I'm a baby blogger....it's true....a certified "green-horn" and not too proud to say so. Obviously, I don't know the first thing about this blogging stuff except that it's really kinda fun. Even if no one ever reads it but an occassional child of mine, that's cool, because I just have fun doin' the thang!
After spending a few days with our precious son, home on leave from the war in Afghanistan, my perspective is renewed, once again, to that which matters most...... this wonderful relationship I have with my GOD and His amazing love for us!
Always looking for more insight into that love.....

...giving voice to those with none....

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Having Strength

As I have struggled with recent challenges in my new position here, and always, Father GOD is faithful to reassure and comfort me with His Words. I have never felt the presence of Jesus beside me more than I do now, and that is so nice, that there are no words to really do those feelings justice. Recently, I was led to purchase a book entitled, "How Strong Women Pray," by Bonnie St. John. She is a remarkable woman herself, but she has managed to locate many other remarkable women to share their stories as well. I highly recommend it.

Back to the point of this post.... this morning I was reminded of some very precious Words known to me all my life, said over and over and over again, but this season they take on an entirely different meaning.

"I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me...I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ's sufficiency."

Philippians 4:13

The way we often banter about the Words of scripture sometimes lead us into a state of desensitization with them. We see them on plaques, on mirrors, on this little dilly dally thing or another, and they seem, at times, to lose their "punch." However, when the Spirit of GOD brings them rhema to us, all of a sudden, there is this whoosh as the breath of GOD flows through His Words and our spirits again, reenergize and restore us in that which we need for the hour.

Living and Learning,

...giving voice to those with none...

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Thoughts in the flood

Seriously, a real live flood. Leaving early, early this morning for the office and discovering the water covering the hood of my car, I realized I was just given that day off I have been craving. The police blocking the street looked pretty serious that nothing was gettin' thru today. It's funny....the things that we spend time stressing over and rushing to and fro to accomplish come to a screeching halt in the face of elements created by the Almighty. I do hurt for my staff that are having to work double shifts because replacements can't reach them. We saw satellite feeds of the Coast Guard out with boats rescuing those who ventured forth in less than wisdom!

Just reflecting a minute on a talk I am giving to the associates next week.....the subject is Needs and Desires of Aging.

Needs and desires.....hmmm.....

....giving voice to those with none....

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Isn't it Interesting?

Interesting that last night I had destiny on my mind and this morning, a devotional I subscribe to was posted with that focus. The pastor asked good questions...these are some of the same questions I ask people when I interview them for employment with our facility, and always have. I want to know what it is that attracts them to us, particularly now since the population we work with is so special. These are worthy of a good pondering:
1. What is your deepest desire?
2. What stirs your passion?
3. What naturally flows out of you?
4. Where do you get results?
5. What career or ministry do you feel the peace of God about pursuing?
6. What thoughts, visions, dreams are impossible to put out of your mind?
7. What goal or ambition can you dedicate yourself to 100% for the rest of your life?
8. What do people volunteer to help you accomplish?

Most interestingly, he entitled the devotional "What it Means to Be a Worshipper." I never thought about it in those terms even tho I am sure that somewhere in the past I have said that my life was my worship to God. It is...our life is our worship to God....we don't think about that too often. We have wrapped our concept of worship around an action we take when we are gathered in a public "service or meeting"... or maybe even that great alone time when we just let it all out with God. But we are really missing the boat if we think that He is unconcerned with our all day, every day comings and goings, our doings and our thoughts. We worship Him in the most dear way to His heart when we love His people and bless them with our lives. That, to me, is pure worship.

...giving voice to those with none...

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Thoughts and Reflections

Listening to "This Time" by John Legend brings this quote to mind:
"And the day came when the risk it took to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom."
~Anais Nin~
It takes courage to be what God intended for us to be... a child who loves ... one who is not afraid to share His love with mankind. We have been blessed with four children and one grandchild. Our greatest joy is when they are settled in their lives in whatever venue, whatever activities and occupations they choose at different times in their lives...living in peace and feeling fulfilled in their tasks. But our hearts rejoice when we know they have a relationship with their Saviour and are willing to love those around them. What else matters when the sun sets and the day closes down? To have known love and grace and mercy.... to bloom ...
As the lights dim tonight ...

... giving voice to those with none ...

Hi and Hello and a little Howdy!

Well...isn't this just the bomb!! So, a new experiment in living. As I write, I'm listening to Missy Higgins' "Where I Stood"... a very neat song. And the phrase, "I don't who I am without you," speaks so clearly to me of my love relationship with Jesus. If you happen in on this little area of cyberspace, you will see and hear about this relationship with God...one I hope you share, but if not, His love for you is not altered, just intensified. There is a phrase used in a book I read recently that I just loved....really loved, and I quote it now. Now Sharoni (that's me!), she is one of my children who "I'm particularly fond of." And you should know that God is "particularly fond of you too," whether you have ever thought of being fond of Him or not. It's a very amazing relationship you should check out, or check into, or whatever. In any case, you are very welcome here!
To start the ball rolling, the following is representative of my heart tonight and has been for quite a long time:
"Today a new sun rises for me; everything lives, everything is animated, everything seems to speak to me of my passion, everything invites me to cherish it."
~Anne De Lenclos~

...giving voice to those with none...