Tuesday, October 23, 2012

I found the following poem in The Treasury of Religious Verse and it blessed me.  Our faith isn't based on how things are going but on the unshakable fact that God is for us and that He works all things together for good to those that love Him. It doesn't mean we don't grieve in the pain and loss but that we cling to Him and to a sure reward in spite of the difficulties and disappointments at hand. 


I will not doubt, though all my ships at sea
  Come drifting home with broken masts and sails';
  I shall believe the Hand which never fails,
From seeming evil worketh good to me;
  And though I weep because those sails are battered
  Still will I cry, while my best hopes be shattered,
     "I trust in Thee."

I will not doubt, though all my prayers return
  Unanswered from the still, white realm above;
  I shall believe it is an all-wise Love
Which has refused those things for which I yearn;
  And though, at times, I cannot keep from grieving,
  Yet she pure ardor of my fixed believing
      Undimmed shall burn.

I will not doubt, though sorrows fall like rain,
  And troubles swarm like bees about a hive;
Are only reached by anguish and by pain;
  And, though I groan and tremble with my crosses,
  I yet shall see, through my severest losses,
     The greater gain.

I will not doubt; well anchored in the faith,
  Like some stanch ship, my soul braves every gale,
  So strong its courage that it will not fail
To breast the mighty, unknown sea of death.
  Oh, may I cry when body parts with spirit,
  "I do not doubt,"  so listening worlds may hear it
     With my last breath.

                                            Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Sunday, October 7, 2012

I don't have babies easily, each of my children were born after a long, hard labor.  Now we are in labor again for spiritual birth and for some of them it feels long and hard. I was thinking today about some of the parallels.  I had very little control about the outcome and yet I was intimately and painfully involved with the process. In the same way I can't force my child to yield their life to Jesus and embrace Him as their rightful LORD and master - I have very little control, and it is excruciating bearing with  them as they choose to live for the flesh and make devastating decisions that we will all live with for life. As they thrash about the "womb" of our home and family, we feel every kick and punch. You can't separate yourself from your unborn child.  I remember waking in the night needing to use the bathroom because my body was processing the wastes for two, now I wake to pray, processing the spiritual "wastes" for them as well as myself. I don't ever remember worrying during labor that  any of my babies would be stillborn even though it was certainly in the realm of the possible, in fact I comforted myself between contractions with the coming joy of holding our new baby.  Perhaps rather than picturing and fearing their eternal damnation I need to picture our lives in a unified spiritual relationship with these yet unsaved children, imagining what it will be to fellowship freely and to work together for the Kingdom.    I really didn't mind being pregnant - it seemed like such a privilege, somehow I want to get to the place where this discomfort and pain feel like a Kingdom privilege.  Right now it feels like I felt with my firstborn when labor had gone on for three days without a break, that perhaps this was just the way the rest of my life would be with no relief.  During one of my labors, I had hung verses on our wall and I traced out the words with my eyes and in my mind as I breathed through contractions, one especially, "The name of the LORD is a strong tower.  The righteous runneth into it and is safe."  I think I'll meditate on those wonderful words some more as we breathe through the spiritual contractions anticipating the moment of birth.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

For whatever reason, this poem touched a chord with me this week.  Knowledge is nothing without faith and true wisdom goes deeper than just surface knowledge. 

                         O World

O world, thou choosest not the better part!
It is not wisdom to be only wise,
And on the inward vision close the eyes;
But it is wisdom to believe the heart.
Columbus found a world, and had no chart
Save one that faith deciphered in the skies
To trust the soul's invincible surmise
Was all his science and his only art.
Our knowledge is a touch of smoky pine
That lights the pathway but one step ahead
Across a void of mystery and dread.
Bid, then, the tender light of faith to shine
By which alone the mortal heart is led
Unto the thinking of the thought divine.
                                      George Santayana

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Waiting on the LORD

They shall mount up with wings as eagles....

This week as I was begging the LORD for strength - it just seemed their was too much to do all week and I was tired and pressed and oh so weary.  He gave me the verse from Isaiah: "They that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength.  They shall mount up with wings as eagles.  They shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint."  As I pondered this I wondered what the word wait means.  Does it mean to wait like we wait for traffic or Christmas, or wait as a waitress waits on tables or is it some other meaning altogether?  This morning I looked it up in our Strong's Concordance and was deeply moved and encouraged by the meaning.  The root means to bind together by twisting.  In other words if I am tightly entwined with Jesus I will be strong.  If we pull together I have all of His strength pulling along with my little bit.  Makes me want to draw near and sit at His feet.  There was an eagle soaring over our field today as we came home from church - it was floating on the wind - looked effortless.  It's strength is not in beating its wings but in resting on the powerful wind currents.  I'm looking forward to some soaring. 

Friday, September 14, 2012

Take His Hand

  The Light That is Felt
A tender child of summers three,
Seeking her little bed at night,
Paused on the dark stair timidly.
"Oh, mother! Take my hand," said she,
"And then the dark will all be light."

We older children grope our way
From dark behind to dark before;
And only when our hands we lay,
Dear Lord, in Thine, the night is day,
And there is darkness nevermore.
Reach downward to the sunless days
Wherein our guides are blind as we,
And faith is small and hope delays;
Take Thou the hands of prayer we raise
And let us feel the light of Thee!

Friday, August 31, 2012

The Battle is the LORD's

I flipped my verse card to the front this morning and this was the new card - 

" ...This is what the LORD says to you, 'Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army.  For the battle is not yours, but God's.'" 
II Chronicles 20:5

What a blessing to think that the battle isn't up to us, it is up to God and He is trustworthy!