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'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 . . .