Chapter by Chapter, thoughts on a rainy day…
Today I sit with the Bill Leslie station playing in the background, while the clouds hover above and the occasional rain falls lightly down. (And of course the occasional child comes to obtain my attention.) Days like today make me want to drink coffee (which is happening), maintain the quiet and simplicity of our home, and either watch a Winnie the Pooh or read a Jan Karon or Thomas Kinkade book. (It may happen yet!)
I endearingly call these days my “Irish days” because apparently all I can think of when I think of Ireland is rain. I have rolled out the brown paper and set out the crayons and markers for Ruthie to create with, Timothy is making something in his Minecraft world, and the other three are downstairs Disney Jr-ing it up. (Yes, as much as I’d like all my littles to be sitting in quiet corners drawing, reading, and writing all day, this is our real life and after two complete strangers complimented me on their behavior yesterday in the grocery store, I have concluded that maybe all is not lost when you aren’t “unplugging” everything in your life. Like, maybe in the midst of all the cords and airwaves and games your life can still be completely connected to The Source of Life; like maybe God doesn’t mind sitting down and revealing His fingerprints on your child’s life through their creating Minecraft worlds and through their interest in opening and closing drawers, markers, and pens and through their laughter over a silly mouse or some weird sea creatures that are underwater astronauts. Just a thought.)
My candle on the table wreath has wound its way to the last few days before Resurrection Sunday. I can’t help but think that these days on the way to the cross have all blurred together. I know we did stuff, I know we had some hard days and some really great ones, and I know we suffered some losses and gained some victories. 40 days ago just all swims together in a sea of yesterdays, and I want to get my head above it all, sit by the shore, and ponder what it all meant. (Rain does this for me – causes my mind and soul to feel cleansed and calmed enough to think…the violin playing in the background might be helping too. God is so amazing, creating all of our five senses to fully experience life! Blessed!)
Here are some journal entries from these Lenten days…
“21 Egyptian Christians lost their lives at the hands of ISIS, debates on 50 Shades of Gray, videos talking about porn and babies being left in a drop box…The news is rarely good when the world tells it. So I sat down in that worn leather chair, put on Torwalt’s “Holy Spirit,” and pulled the worn Pages close. Seeking His voice over it all – needing His lamp at my feet in the midst of so much dark…
‘The eyes of the LORD are in every place, watching the evil and the good.’ (Prov. 15:3)
“Watching – leaning forward, to peer into the distance, to await, wait for, keep the watch.” (Hebrew Dictionary)
“There was nothing passive about God during the pronouncement of those deaths, the publishing of that book, or the producing of that movie. He is watching, leaning forward, and awaiting! Awaiting you, me, they…God looks past shades, colors, skin, and blood and sees the very beings He created. And He stands up and waits while He watches, never turning away from the ones He loves!
‘Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God.’ (1 Jn. 3:1)
‘Do you doubt Me? Do you question My power, that I can do what I’ve said? Just watch – you’ll see what will happen.’ (Num. 11:23, The Voice)
“Once again I have come to the conclusion that I don’t seem to know how to enjoy this world without craving it and digging my nails in deep…Let my life crave and cling to You only, Lord.
“What amazing, beautiful Love…I know I have all access to You, Jesus; I pray I will give You all access to me! There is no other possible way to present Your Bride Beautiful than to give full, complete access to her Bridegroom.
“…it’s this place of slavery that deceivingly makes me think I have some amount of control, but of course we both know it is controlling and destroying me! This fear prevents me from loving…I want to be healed! Just like You have done for so many, speak the Word that I may rise up whole.
” ‘All I really am is a little person, sitting in the dirt, just loving my Lord Jesus with reckless devotion…He made us to be receptacles for his glory, his grace, and His mercy…It is a privilege and a joy to say yes to God…We are called to live so deeply inside the heart of Jesus, that we feel and move in rhythm with the very heartbeat of the Father…I want to be a leaky vessel – always spilling His love everywhere I go so that other thirsty souls can drink…Wherever we go in the world, we are presence carriers...The best method of witnessing we have…is an attitude that shows people how much we trust our God.’ (Heidi and Roland Baker) “
My prayer at the beginning of these 40 days was that I wouldn’t be the same when they were over, and I think He is answering affirmatively. I am not the same in many ways, and the areas where I am are still all His. I tend to focus too much on all that I deem wrong with me, and I think Father is gently, patiently, and lovingly giving me new eyes to see not just others but even myself the way He does. The entries above seem to be like a chapter in my story unfolding beautifully; though, how was I to know it’d all fit together like this? The Author knows what He’s doing chapter by chapter.
I’ll end all this rambling of typed thoughts with a text I shared with a friend the other day. It’s a text I’ll always treasure because it is a monument in my walk with Christ. Blessings, Friends. Remember, He is risen, and for that very reason, resurrection is yours for the taking also!
“When you asked me to teach, though my response may have been reserved, my insides were leaping. ONLY JESUS! This still has nothing particular to do with feeling like teaching is my thang, but it does have everything to do with having a tangible outlet to share my love and joy in Christ! I am ecstatic!”