September 18, 2012

ANCHORED





There is an anchoring in Jesus 
that I need.

In my travels and in my life journey,
Both in physical & spiritual realms,
I need an anchor.

As a human being I am a fellow sojourner
on this earth with the rest.
As a follower of Jesus,
I am a soul-journeyer, too.

Both aspects of this journeying
make me hunger for the Anchor.

This sojourning pilgrimage conjures up many pictures:
Mountains, valleys, meadows, rivers.
Fellow pilgrims, supporting characters, experiences.
There is danger, there is suffering.
There is joy and there is victory.
There are lessons.  There is growth.
There is a calling deep within us all
To make a journey.

My life has been full of travels,
Of moves, of changes, of transitions
This has made me more aware of my need to shore up.

May all my travel-journeys,
Moves, changes & transitions
Be catalysts toward a soul-awakening need
For that deep anchoring
in Jesus.


“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm & secure.”
Hebrews 6:19

September 11, 2012

SERIOUSLY!




Seriously!

My life has been so serious in the last few months,
I've barely been able to breathe, never mind laugh.

How did it get like that?

Somewhere in the growing stream of flights, suitcases, ToDo's, phone calls, routines, presentations, projects, budgets, financial issues, pressing parental needs, attitudes, being "on" all the time during home assignment, living with others constantly as gracious as they are, missing home, health issues among us, college transitions and a million other things, my smile waned.

There was no time or space for fun except for some occasional, brief stints into diversion.

You know what?

I do not want to be like that.

So the other day I had a conversation with God while on a walk and I said,

"Please make me laugh again.
please make me fun for my children.
Please help me make my husband laugh right in the middle of his day.
Teach me the art of not taking life so seriously that there is no time
for fun or play or tickling or bubbles or funny movies.
Even as my kids grow older and the fun looks different,
Don't let me lose the spirit of it."

I realize that I may have a higher "fun quota" than some others;
I do feel a deep need for this in order to stay healthy.
And I am also aware that I have chosen a precariously serious profession.
But in the midst of it all, let me laugh!
Help me to sensitively draw in those around me who need this God-given release, too.
Bring out the inner child that is an expert at play
in the heart of the responsible adult, hard at God-given work.

Please make me fun to be with!

Jesus encouraged us to be like a child...
And I'm sure some of His reasons are about their spontaneity,
their ability to laugh at the silly,
their drivenness to play and their great joy in the simple.

Grant me that hilarity of God, 
The joyfulness of His Spirit,
in the midst of this seriousness 
called life.



photo by: melissa_dawn





September 8, 2012

LOVE STORY REVISED







For some dear saints (D & S.O) 
who had to leave the field due to a debilitating illness....
but whose LOVE and LIFE CALL have beautifully merged
 as they live out HIS STORY in living colour before us all. 




When love begins so blissfully
Our imaginations write out our story
They run ahead of us joyfully –
Painting, sketching, splashing colours with abandon
It’s all part of the treasure-building season of First Love.

When Life Call is a strong undercurrent,
A guiding force in the First Love,
The world is yours!
You storm your country by force,
Laboring in prayer, battling spiritual forces,
Scattering seed, loving lavishly in word and deed,
Rejoicing in fruitfulness,
Identifying through the raising of your children among them,
Passionately pursuing language & cultivating a fascination with every aspect of the culture –
It is all burning within you.

And when That Day came
And this perfect union of First Love and Life Call were torn -
The pen was ripped from your hand.
Someone began to cross things out
of your imagined Life Story -
To erase, to revise, to change.
You were thrown, out of control and headlong,
into a Story unknown to you.
It is foreign.
It is unwanted.
It is not the one you imagined.
  
There were weeks and months and even years
Of resistance and grief and adjustment
To this new Life Story.
The middle chapters are bittersweet,
Full of questioning for the five.

When did you wake up and embrace it?
What was that moment like?
The one where you clearly saw
The Unseen Hand writing sovereignly
The day you chose to adjust the Life Call
Under His appointment
The day you declared: Our First Love will not change.

I’m sure the heavenlies cheered, no,
Exploded with joy on that day –
As well as every day you choose -
That your First Love will not change.

The chapters to come are written in His Book.
They are still unknown to you,
But they are known and precious to Him.
And every prayer you whisper, every love-deed you gift,
every patient enduring you demonstrate, every blue-eyed look of love or gratitude, is being recorded.

Your Story is different than you imagined.
But your Love is a Love Story worth telling,
Worth living,
Worth observing,
Worth praising,
Worth emulating,
Worth writing a book about,
And today – more than worth celebrating!

I’m glad you’re letting Him write your Story.
It is more beautiful, more poignantly His,
than any of us could have written or imagined.

Your Life Call and your First Love
Have merged into one.
And isn’t that what His Story is all about?


Happy, happy 25th.

September 6, 2012

THE SHADOW (on ministry fatigue)





This fatigue of the body,
the rawness of emotion,
the self-protective numbness of the soul,
leave me vulnerable.

A growing weariness of body, soul and spirit
have crushed me into David's dust.

Stress, and a certain grief & disappointment,
long hours of constant demands of people and their needs -
real, contrived, imagined, exaggerated,
even chosen & clung to -
(this sounds scarily like me)
weigh heavily like a wool blanket over me.

Sovereign One,
Lift me above this grey cloud,
Let me soar peacefully with You for a while...
Let me rest, oblivious, to the darkening, swirling turmoil below
Let me remain here!
Let me stay here in this Shadow of the Wings of One called Almighty.
Grant me this high & holy perspective when I return
Strengthen my hands for the work you have assigned to me.
Convince my weakened heart and soul again
of Your very certain love for me.
Renew my vision & eternal purpose
Grant me the insight of blessings.
Let me see You in all of this.

When I return to task,
I want to continually see You,
to work with an awareness of being under Your Shadow,
to be surrendered to Your cloud-lifting Presence throughout the day,
to live in that space where in all I do
You invade, You breathe, You inspire, You energize & You enable.

Let me abide in that Shadowed Place.


September 3, 2012

LONGINGS




Longings...
to be there to watch your joy
or your pain.
To be invisibly present somehow when you make your first friend...
or answer your first question in class.
To encourage when you hesitate
to applaud when you show courage
to be proud when you are kind
or to pray if you are mistreated.

There are longings...
To know if I did enough
if I prayed enough
if I stayed enough
I have to wonder if I loved enough
laughed enough, cried enough
I long to learn from my errors in time for the next child
to adjust...to be better.

These longings
on the first day of school
were shadowy prophets to the first day of university
The mother-longings & wonderings are mysteriously twin on these days.

The separation now is longer
The things I miss are grander in scale
Now they are not home by lunchtime to talk about their morning...
No, there are many hours & kilometers between us.

So instead of lunchtime together,
we wait for a skype call.
Instead of a bedtime routine, we text.
Instead of a hug, we send a care package.
Instead of driving her to the next event, we pray.
Instead of being together, we long.

Longings...
part of a mother's life
a mother's heart,
a mother's world.

Let me long for You, Jesus, like this.


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