Pain and grief build like the thick muggy atmosphere before a storm. You tell yourself you are okay but after awhile your heart and mind fill until the storm clouds break and you are left in a downpour of tears and a thunderstorm of racking shakes until through the midst of the rain you see Jesus. Scarred hand reaching out and taking you into His arms. As you cry into His heart you slowly feel better, His reassuring voice trickles in through the sobs and you hear Him tell you He loves you and that you will be okay. Suddenly your pain stops and feel like air after a big storm…refreshed…renewed…clear…. better. Thank you Jesus.
Downward spiral .vs. upward climb
Have you ever noticed how it is a spiral? Spiral indicates fast, generally out of control and of course spinning.
It sounds like a bad ride at an amusement park, you know, the one your friends dare you to go on and then you feel too sick to do anything else for the next 2 days. 10 years later you have the confidence to laugh about it with someone. Spiral.
And upward CLIMB. With this one I visualize a mountain. I love hiking and exploring. If you let me go with my dog and spend the day someplace hiking and exploring, there is a chance we will be gone that whole day. Generally the moment we feel like…..I am sorry, I feel like, he could go on forever……when I feel like turning around is the moment I hit a steep incline. Usually it is my powerhouse Jack Russell who keeps me moving, he is probably 1/6th of my weight and yet he is the one who pulls me to the top and we stand (and I gasp for air) and he starts to head down the next trail, dragging me behind and I feel this wave of achievement. We made it to the top! Oh Ya! And look! Another hill…… I wonder what the top of that one looks like?
To hit rock bottom takes a simple ‘yes’ or a small give in your normal perspective. It happens fast, it is generally a little sickening and it takes a long time to recover.
To hit the summit takes a lot of hard work, motivation, and sometimes someone else pulling on your lead to keep you going, and you find acheivement in the end.
To climb back up from the bottom is a massive struggle and you can NOT do it without God, but you CAN do it.
What gifts do we bring Him?
The Shepherds brought their time.
The Magi brought their riches.
The disciples brought their lives.
His parents brought their faith and obedience.
So what do we bring Jesus?
He gave us everything we have. Hope, joy, healing, sustenance, peace, grace, love. He gave His dignity and His relationship to God. His pain is ours to unwrap, His grief and suffering, His sorrow. We can untie the bows on His glory and goodness. We can shake the box full of His kingdom and receive all He has given us. So, what are we giving Him?
What part of us does He ask for? All of us. Our heart, soul and mind, right? It can be a difficult request to fill, but isn’t that what He brought us? His heart, His soul, His mind. Ask and you shall receive, so maybe what we should ask for is the will and ability to be like our Savior. If we are more like Jesus then perhaps we will be able to bring Jesus more.
Love you all!
May your season and year be filled with Christ’s peace, His hope, His love, and His joy!
So. I ended up in emergency today. My dog accidentally bit my nose and it led to 3 stitches and plastic surgery tomorrow morning. If you knew me well you would know that needles send me. I had 8 of them in my nose today, maybe more but 8 was the amount I recall. There are times in our lives when it is horrible. In those moments we can choose to do many things, when we choose to call on Jesus we find sudden help and relief.
When that first needle went into the open wound my heart screamed out,
‘Jesus PLEASE! HELP ME!’
Every needle after I screamed the same inaudible prayer and everytime Jesus’ presence took over the whole situation and made me feel like I would get through this.
You don’t have to kneel and verbally call out for Jesus to hear you. He hears you. Every thought. Every word. Every need. Every want and hope. Jesus hears you.
He might not take the situation away, but He WILL get you through it.
So this Thanksgiving Weekend I say:
“Thank you Jesus for saving my soul! For hearing my prayers! For caring about every throb of my heart and for drawing me through life and closer to you. Thank you God for not just lending us your son, but for GIVING us your son and allowing us to have Him and you and the Holy Spirit. Thank you Holy Spirit for your patience with us and that you are always here. Amen”
HAPPY THANKSGIVING FRIENDS
The ASL sign for complain is a hand motion of a cup that pounds on your chest. Isn’t that exactly what complaining feels like? A pounding of grief, anger, pain, pounding on your heart until it overflows from your mouth in the form of a complaint.
Everytime someone in the Bible complained something either went wrong or got worse. So what is the lesson? Don’t complain.Ya right. It is so very hard to not complain, even if the verbal sensation steals our joy and causes us greater destruction. We complain because we need relief and feel like spouting our problems will help. I have a solution. Don’t complain to people, instead beg mercy from God. Tell Him what you are going through and ask Him to help.
This way you accomplish three things.
A. You set your problems in the hands of the one who can actually help
B. You talk about your grief and get it off your chest
C. You fellowship with the All Mighty.
All of these things cause you to feel better, and best of all, actually make a difference in your situation.
God wants to help us, but He also wants us to bring these things to Him. Sometimes we won’t see a change until we ask God. Cry to God. Tell our Father that we need Him. Then He reaches out His hand and helps us back to where we are meant to be .
Jesus washed the disciples feet. That means He also washed Judas’ feet.
How often do we feel like not only does one of our friends have a Judas complex, but also like we have been handed a bucket of hot water and a towel so we can wash their feet?
Friends can be fickle, and it is easy to feel betrayed and hurt by them, or to feel that they are just out for themselves, sound familiar? Sounds like Judas to me. We can never experience the pain of complete betrayal like Jesus ( even if it feels like we have) but dishonest, self seeking “friends” are everywhere and most people have gone through some form of frenimies pain; but Jesus still calls us to be there for them, to show them friendship and once in a while to wash their feet. Our God loves humility and what could be more humble of a task than foot washing? Can you smell the sweat ridden sandals? Can you feel the dirt of the road washing off of them and onto you? Perhaps That was Jesus’ point. He was about to wash us clean of all our sins and put them upon His own body, the same way He washed His friend’s feet and let their dirt wash onto His hands. Hands soon to be pierced by nails and hung on a tree. If Jesus could wash Judas’ feet I can wash the feet of my frenimies.
Jesus, please help us to wash the feet of those who hurt us. If for no other reason let us do it to draw closer to you. Amen
Credit to owner for image
Perfect rainy days, where the wind blows and pulls on your hair like a vigorous stylist and the rain itself smells salty like the ocean as it plays Chopin on your truck windshield.
Days where adventure in palatable and your fingertips tingle as the dampness of the day plays upon your hands.
I adore days like today because I am a BC girl. Many people find tge rain depressing, but not me. God brings the rain for the plants to grow, to heal and encourage the land, He has a purpose for every drop that touches the earth just as He has a purpose for every person.
Trust in the one who knows all and tells each cloud where to place it’s bounty and calls the wind to direct the shower. There is a reason for everything including a sleepy, rainy day. So enjoy the rain as it falls, listen to it’s music and relax.
Enter Jerusalem, the city streets are filled with celebrating and cheering as a humble and gentle donkey colt strides down the streets.
Palms are laid at the sweet animal’s feet and a sense of pride wells in the donkey’s heart. He is carrying Jesus, as all animals know Jesus is the king of kings, God’s one and only Son; but the donkey senses sonething, a feeling of pain in the heart of his Lord. The donkey is confused and turns his head to nuzzle the King’s foot, a gentle hand strokes the animal’s neck in response. The donkey stretches hard to see Jesus’ face. The beaming smile is a shock to the donkey because it can sense the sadness within the savior’s heart. All the gentle colt can do is continue to carry his Lord.
The animal saw both joy and sorrow and could not understand, but the joy was love for the King’s people, and the sorrow was knowledge that these people were only a breath away from condemning their King to die; but one small donkey showed his love and carried the weight of the savior as the savior carried the weight of the world.
Jesus was recorded as having great anguish as He neared Jerusalem. Anguish that simple human senses could barely begin to understand. To suffer is one thing, but to know you are about to suffer is another. If we saw the suffering that would come in our lives we as people could not handle it. Jesus knew every bit of His suffering to come and that caused Him greater pain than He would have experienced if it had all been a shock or surprise. Days of waiting are too much to bear, but He bore them for us. The false love of the people must have stung and the lies of Judas must have made His heart sick, but He suffered them all because He loves us. Oh what a love that is, who else could give such love? Who else would? Only Jesus loves us so much.
Credit to owner for image
How many people here love the play fiddler on the roof?
Okay. How many of you remember the song ‘do you love me’?
Tevye asks his wife if she loves him and she responds-
Golde: Do I love you? For twenty-five years, I’ve washed your clothes, Cooked your meals, cleaned your house, Given you children, milked the cow.
Tevye: But do you love me?
How often do we work for God, suffer for God, take great strains to please God but don’t actually love Him? When we think about it if God set us on a perverbial mountain top with everything we ever begged for, searched for and longed for and then He just left, would we miss Him? Would we miss our times talking with Him? Worshiping Him? Being His friend?
Jesus wants a relationship, not a dictatorship. We can’t sit on our throne and tell our king what we want from Him, then complain when He isn’t fast enough or doesn’t do exactly what we wanted and not exspect Him to begin to feel unloved. We need to give the throne back to Jesus and sit at His feet just loving His presence.
So, do we love Jesus or do we love what He offers? Heaven, blessings, so on. If He left today would you miss Him? Would we notice He was gone?
In a time when we need to be remembering love remember to love the one who loves you more than anyone else ever can.
Credit to owner for artwork
Why would the king, who has the finest flowers in His royal garden, care enough to climb through the forest to find a back woods rose like me and carry me home? He puts me in a crystal vase on His dresser and sets me in a place of honor among His royal flowers. He finds delight in me even though I am prickly and plain. He gives me special care because He sees my petals wilting and He makes sure that I always have enough of all I need. Why would a royal king dirty His hands to pack my roots with fresh soil? As He labours over all the flowers around me I see His sweat stained brow, I notice the mud smeared on His face and I see His hands bleeding from the thorns of the plants He loves. I feel unworthy to be sitting on His dresser as He works hard, but what can I do? I am simply a flower. He caresses my leaves as He walks by and smiles. What more is there for a flower to do but to bring joy to her master?
Perhaps sometimes that is all Jesus wants from us; for us to see all He is and to bring Him joy by honoring Him with all we can do. As a simple flower I can make someone smile with my sweet scent, as a common herb perhaps you can add flavour to a dish or become a healing medicine.
This is a fanciful way of saying we are all individuals, different and unique. Jesus loves us all for who we are and is brought joy when we use what we can do to honor Him.