29 September 2013

31 days of surrender

It has always been difficult for me to walk away from a challenge.  
For the fifth year The Nester is hosting a 31 day writing event.  
Participants choose a topic and blog about it every day during the month of October.

Rick and I are walking through new doors that the Lord is swinging wide before us, 
but we can not answer His call in our own strength, 
for our own reasons 
or for any glorification of our selves.

I am not at all certain how the posts will evolve.  
They could be pictures, scriptures, poetry or prose.  
I do pray that they will not only be about surrender 
but also an exercise in surrender.

Will you join me?

I'll leave links to each day's post right here
so this page can be a jumping off place

Day 1: tenacious cling
Day 2: accept the blessing

28 September 2013

mere rushing on

One's action ought to come out of an achieved stillness: 
not to be mere rushing on
D. H. Lawrence

help me settle, Lord
into the peace of Your embrace
surrendered to Your command
where anxiety flees
seeking the stillness with Sandy


27 September 2013

September lessons

This month is closing soon
October is knocking at the door
with the wind sharp and cold
today is a good time to reflect
on lessons September taught me

In September, I learned:

things look clearer looking backwards in When I see you I see me 

God surely laughs in God's sense of humour 

things don't happen in my time in Awaiting storm 

safety can be an idol in Seeking safety 

His mercy is vast in Mercy for all 

change happens in Standing on new ground

change is more than paint deep in Put a coat of paint on it 

people are people not problems in Not an issue to solve 

I need to be transformed in Living water 

Joining Emily and others sharing what September taught


25 September 2013

living water

the bathroom renovation is nearing completion
things at first only imagined are becoming real
fixtures are in place
lines are connected
and water flows

there is a finish line
we will cross it
and the work will be over

the renovation of my heart
mind and spirit
continues and continues
no perfection until I stand
in His presence
drenched in living water

flow fast
flow free
drench me

Do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, 
that you may prove what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

walking with the imperfect but redeemed at Emily's


24 September 2013

not an issue to solve

Do you see me as a problem? A puzzle?  Something to fix?
I want you to see me.  Just me.  
A little girl who has to grow up too fast.
I'm not just a headline.
I live and breathe and hurt.
I am just like all the other children you know.
Yes, I cry, but I laugh too.
I am not an issue.  I am a life.
I am an opportunity.
I am an invitation into relationship.
What God created us for.
I am waiting.
He Is waiting
What are you waiting for?

Poverty is not necessarily an issue to solve; 
it is an opportunity to serve. 
As we go through each day, 
our heart’s cry should be, 
"Lord, where would you have me give, 
serve, and invest myself to bring hope to the poor?"
Orphan Justice author, Johnny Carr

Is the Lord whispering to your spirit, urging you to get involved?  
Click here to begin the sponsorship journey.


22 September 2013

welcome one another

So reach out and welcome one another to God’s glory. 
Jesus did it; now you do it!
 singing with Deidra and the Sunday choir


20 September 2013

personal sounds

We listen too much to the telephone 
and we listen too little to nature. 
The wind is one of my sounds. 
A lonely sound, perhaps, but soothing. 
Everybody should have his personal sounds to listen for
sounds that will make him exhilarated and alive, 
or quiet and calm... 
As a matter of fact, 
one of the greatest sounds of them all
and to me it is a sound
is utter, complete silence.
André Kostelanetz
seeking the silence with Sandy

19 September 2013

shifted glory

leaves are loosing their green
transformed to browns
yellows, a blanket spreading 
wide across the yard
the glories of Summer
ceding to Autumn
and yet
the flowers refuse
to surrender
exploding wild with life
in hues of joyous praise
capturing the light
against the darkening days


my shirt

it may be dirty
with holes worn through
a little too big
but it covers me
when I want to hide
there is room in here
I pull it over my head
close my eyes
I grow tired of seeing
the same nothing
day after day
I grow weary
of trying to 
sleep the same hunger 
screaming night after night

covered with mud
tattered and worn
but mine
all I can call my own
can you see me
in here
behind the rags
I live and hurt and wonder
about the God I've heard of
and the people who help
in His name

will they find me?

Compassion Blog Month is more than halfway over.  If you'd like to help us reach our goal of getting 3,160 children sponsored online by 11:59 p.m. MT on September 30 click here for moire information.

Sponsor a Child in Jesus Name with Compassion


17 September 2013

put a coat of paint on it

does your day feel
dark, messy
put a coat of paint on it
maybe no one
will know
are there cracks
where the  pain
weeps and leaks
put a coat of paint on them
it might seal
what will not 
or at least forget
for a little while
memories like dirt
streaks ragged
put a coat of paint on 
everything looks like new
looks like
but isn't
give me the paint
that washes 
clean the deep red 
flow that leaves 
snow white behind

Come now, and let us reason together, says the Lord. 
Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow 

back at the bar with the poets


standing on new ground

Remember the old ugly?  
I have lived with a floor I hate 
since moving into this house eleven years ago.  
It still covers the hall and the kitchen/dining room,
but in those areas there isn't water damage underneath.  
How much is hidden beneath ours foundations that is rotted and soiled?
When we know something is wrong but are afraid to look the damage increases.

It was time.  We stripped the old away.
It was bad, but nothing that couldn't be dealt with.
Yes, our imaginations magnify.
So I ask Lord, search me.
Show me the wrinkles and spots.
Let me see so I can let You change me.

Investigate my life, O God,
    find out everything about me;
Cross-examine and test me,
    get a clear picture of what I’m about;
See for yourself whether I’ve done anything wrong—
    then guide me on the road to eternal life.

This is what the floor looks like at the moment.
The wire for the under tile heat is in place
and leveling cement has been poured
to prep for the laying of ceramic tile
There are spots from dry wall mud
yet it feels clean, fresh
a picture of where I am
standing on new ground
waiting to take the next step


15 September 2013

fresh start

God, make a fresh start in me,
    shape a Genesis week from the chaos of my life.
Don’t throw me out with the trash,
    or fail to breathe holiness in me.

celebrating Sunday with Deidra


14 September 2013

by listening

I remind myself every morning: 
Nothing I say this day will teach me anything. 
So if I'm going to learn, 
I must do it by listening. 
Larry King

in the stillness with Sandy


13 September 2013

mercy for all

is that a cross in the clouds or Jesus with arms extended to us all?
you're gonna get what you give
seems I heard that over and over during my growing years
(as if growing ever ceases)
if you want to have a friend, be a friend
do unto others
love your neighbor

some lessons have been harder to learn
forgiveness, grace

can I proclaim judgement on others
while expecting mercy for myself?
dare I shout out for punishment for the sins of another
while clothing myself in the truth of His goodness 
while His mercy washes over me?

He Is mercy.  He Is grace.  He is love.
for the least of us
for all of us

Five Minute Friday 
talking about mercy with Lisa-Jo
check out what the women of (in)courage are up to in Kenya here


11 September 2013

seeking safety

I received the following email earlier this week:

For assignment two of Compassion Blog Month we want you to write three things about one word.

I am reposting a prayer from one year ago today, during another blog month, with thoughts of 9/11/2001 swirling.  The one word I am highlighting is safe or safety

My precious Lord:

Today marks eleven years since the Twin Towers fell in New York City.
Eleven years since acts of violence forever changed the way we live life.
Security has taken top priority, risen up like a golden calf.
We seem to seek safety above all else.

Your life wasn't safe Lord, you lived each moment
knowing that one day you would pay the ultimate price
your blood, your life, given for us.

The winds are howling strong today
trees trembling in a frenzied dance
the wail like a cry in my spirit, a continuous prayer
let me be more like You
dead to myself and alive in You
living for grace, for love, for mercy and justice

There are so many children who have never known safety
they have never lived in what we would call a home
families are broken, shattered with need
help me to care more for them
then my own comfort

The wind howls still
as my prayers continue
help me be a mother to the motherless
a friend to the weak
let me be filled with Your passion, Lord.

I may be the only Jesus they see
may I reflect You, Lord as You are
not as I might imagine You

True light, true love.
The answer to every question, asked or silent.
Through the acts of my heart and hands
may they taste and see that You are good.

This month, the goal is to get 3,160 children sponsored.  If God has been tugging at your heart, this is a great time to visit the Compassion page and extend your heart in sponsorship.

Sponsor a Child in Jesus Name with Compassion   

10 September 2013

awaiting storm

clouds slip in
soundless, quick
light muffled 
as all movement
stops, static pricks 
tense skin
thirsty ground
and hungry hearts
hold breath for the first
drop to nourish, refresh
hands, leaves, petals
reaching wide
for what sun's return denies

back at the bar, hanging with the poets


08 September 2013


The precepts of the Lord are right,
    giving joy to the heart.
The commands of the Lord are radiant,
    giving light to the eyes.
singing at Deidra's with the Sunday choir


07 September 2013

first duty of love

The first duty of love is to listen
Paul Tillich (1886-1965);
Theologian, Philosopher

if I seem quiet here
or non responsive elsewhere
know that I am doing what I am called to
loving in all the ways I can
in silence I adore Him
still and listening with Sandy