Tag Archives: Corinthians

RATIONS 100 DAYS! #75

Grands found their neighborhood friend (under 2 sec after they got here), rode bikes, ate mac n’ cheese, squeezed Halloween Twinkies in their mouths, rode bikes, played ‘king of the mountain’ on Papa’s dirt piles, rode bikes, ate a Halloween Cadbury egg, and are now munchin’ popcorn sprawled all over their bed, cuddled up with pillows, watching a movie.

Phew. I’m tired just watching them. (And yes, Mama BK, they will definitely brush their teeth tonight).

Cold is moving into NC. Windows are open – at least for the first part of the night, letting the feel and smell of fall in as it makes its way into our neighborhood. What a great night to just sit in the chair and absorb the blessings of the evening. Besides – gives me another reason to be kind to my ever-complaining-toe-that-did-not-like-a-stone-I-stepped-on-today-owee-swelled-again.

Once again, the second paragraph of today’s Ration spoke right at me. ‘Sometimes He is helping a poor lame man to climb a steep grade’. God winked. I smiled. He is always there. Stepping on a tiny stone with a broken toe, interviewing for a job, celebrating a 10th anniversary, attending a wild dancing concert in a big city, getting surgery, arriving at a chemo center ,casting a vote in a small booth, sitting on a bed laughing with children.

He’s in all these places and more. We just have to open our heart and see Him in it all.

1942 Daily Rations: ” ‘Was not our house burning within us, while he spake to us in the way?’~Luke 24:32

“Many strange and interesting characters are met on my road of life, but above all other figures, overshadowing them as the mountain overshadows the hill, is the figure of Jesus. This humble Carpenter of Nazareth is on my road each day. No matter how rough or steep the way or how hard the going, looking up I always see him there.

“Sometimes he is helping a poor lame man to climb a steep grade. Again he s whispering words of encouragement to a weak and weary traveler who has collapsed beside the path. I have seen unscrupulous fellows who like vultures were seeking to rob and exploit the unprotected traveler. And as I see him, my soul burns within me, and like the disciples of old, I am renewed in heart and mind. Today I must see him again!

” ‘Seeing it is God, that said, Light shall shine out of darkness, who shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.’~II Cor 4:6

“Read: Luke 24:28-35

“Prayer: Almighty God, we would commit all our way into thy keeping. Help us to see Jesus as he is and, seeing him, to yield our lives unreservedly to his care. As we journey with him today may evil and unworthy thoughts be kept from us. In Christ’ name. Amen.”

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RATIONS 100 DAYS! #66

Pain. No easy wisdom for that one. The debates rage. Answers locked behind a sin barrier that gets thicker by the minute.

Jonah certainly didn’t have the answer. Nineveh had caused his people so much pain, and he didn’t see the point of easing their pain with a warning. They deserved to be destroyed. One whale and three days later, he shook his head dry, took a deep breath and mumbling under his breath, he accomplished his appointed warning to Nineveh.

What most of us forget is Jonah’s last chapter. Pain riddled, his brain picked at those little things that set the anger up another notch. He plopped himself down to watch this hated city – hoping for distruction but knowing His Lord was merciful. He didn’t like that God’s grace would extend to such a people. They weren’t the chosen. They weren’t like him. So God appointed a plant, a worm, a wind to challenge Jonah to think again.

“You pity the plant, for which you did not labor, nor did you make it grow, which came into being in a night and perished in a night. And should I not pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know their right hand from their left…?” Jonah 4:10-11

Jonah’s story ends there, and we are left to wonder. Wonder at Jonah’s painful struggle with obedience to his Lord over the world’s wisdom? Ponder his struggle – our struggles. We will never know until we get on the other side of this life, but Jonah’s story certainly provides some guidance for us in these painful times.

“Should I not pity…?” show grace? show love?

1942 Daily Ration: “Read: 11 Corinthians 12:7-10

“There was given to me a thorn in the flesh,…For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And He said unto me, ‘My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness.’~11 Cor 12:7-9

“Brave witnesses for Christ and noble examples to the rest of us are those who glorify God through their pain. To those who offer their suffering as an act of worship we dedicate these lines found on a hospital wall: ‘Lord Take Away Pain’

The cry of man’s anguish went up to God,
‘Lord, take away pain!’
The shadow that darkens the world you have made,
The close-coiling chain
That strangles the heart, the burden that weighs
On the wings that would soar.
‘Lord take away pain from the world you have made
That it may love you more!’

Then answered the Lord to the cry of his world:
Shall I take away pain,
And with it the power of the soul to endure,
Made strong by strain?
Shall I take away pity that knits heart to heart,
And sacrifice high?
Will you lose all your heroes that lift from the fire
White brows to the sky?
Shall I take away love that redeems with a price,
And smiles at the loss?
Can you spare from your lives that would climb into mine
The Christ on the Cross?

RATIONS 100 DAYS! #63

In our world – and I suppose – in any world, truth is not an easy topic. Each individual is uniquely created. Consequently, everyone seems to want their “truth” to be “the” truth, and heaven help the person who disagrees with “the” truth each person holds.

That’s the problem. Truth changes from person to person, society to society, world to world.When there is no accepted code of “truth”, truth is malleable because man’s logic and wisdom is malleable.

Today’s Ration quoted Coventry Patmore who is a 19th century English poet. His poems reflect his society and the truths he saw within that world. Yet, I think the author of today’s Ration should have added the last 4 lines of that poem instead. It is in those lines that he bring home the main thrust of his thought. It doesn’t matter what he calls truth – what the world calls “truth” – there is but one truth that will prevail over every truth – whether people care – or not.

“Magna Est Veritas” [Truth is Great]
Here, in this little Bay,
Full of tumultuous life and great repose,
Where, twice a day,
The purposeless, glad ocean comes and goes,
Under high cliffs, and far from the huge town,
I sit me down.
For want of me the world’s course will not fail:
When all its work is done, the lie shall rot;
The truth is great, and shall prevail,
When none cares whether it prevail or not.

“Yeshua said to him, “I AM THE LIVING GOD, The Way and The Truth and The Life; no man comes to my Father but by me alone.”~Jn 14:6

1942 Daily Ration: “The truth is great, and shall prevail.”~Coventry Patmore

“Jesus talked on the most profound themes in life. Ponder the topics of his message: God, duty, pain the future life. These are themes that tax philosophers. Yet Jesus handles thee subjects with such a masterly touch and expresses himself in such simple and living phrases that we understand him.

“Every nerve and fiber of his being was sensitive to God’s truth. The unfolding of God’s plan for him brought constant excitement and challenge. All that he had thought, dreamed, loved, flamed forth as he came into his ministry. Little wonder, then that when John the Baptist looked into his face as Jesus dedicated his life to the Kingdom movement, he drew back in humility. In Jesus he saw life have its highest fulfillment. When we learn of Him, our minds find stimulus and new meaning in every daily task.

” ‘Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.’~John 8:32

“Read: 1 Corinthians 2:10-16

“Prayer: O God of truth, we are searchers for the best in life. We quest for truth. We know that our deeds are but sequences to our thoughts. Give us clear perception, flashes of inspiration, and keep open all the channels of our lives for the reception of that which is true and pure and good. In Jesus’ name. Amen.”

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RATIONS 100 DAYS! #42

Well – that was interesting. Got on-line to write a little and find out that my FB account had been hacked.

It made me sad, mad, bad.

It also threw all my writing plans out the window for the night.

It put me in a grumpy mood and spoiled the peacefulness of a Sunday evening.

It- – – – – – sigh.

Happy dogs and sleeping hubby keep me company in a smelly room where one of the dogs passed some gas. I laughed and took a break from my whining to read tonight’s Ration.

Somehow, reading God’s message from 1942 put everything into proportion. In the craziness of bombings, abductions, murders, treachery, treason, genocides against brothers, a FB hacking just doesn’t even begin to deserve a single, whimpy whine.

As I prayed the America’s Prayer Minute tonight with the prayer at the end of today’s Ration, I prayed not only for the Church to get a new vision, courage and unity, but I prayed it for our leaders, our country, and the hacker who had nothing else in their life than to try to drive me away from my path. So here I am, setting out from my computer, ‘doing good’ with courage, vision and unity with my Father.

I totally love the blessing Our Father has brought my way today.

1942 Daily Ration: “God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself.’~Cor 5:19

Here is the whole Christian message in fewer words that are found in an ordinary telegram! The WORD became flesh long ago in a tiny, obscure country, when a Carpenter left his home to go about ‘doing good’. It became a timeless reality when that Carpenter was crucified and rose again. It is our only hope today when the world lies crushed and bleeding.

“As a time when the world has fallen apart in its secular forms it is drawing toward a common center in its spiritual form. There is no movement among men that brings such a challenge across the barriers of race and nation and class as that which comes from the Christian Church as it expresses its world consciousness. Each time the loaf and the cup are lifted up in countless Communion services this world consciousness is expressed. Let us enter the church with a prayer of thanksgiving for this fellowship of Christ,

‘And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto myself.’~John 12:32

“Read: Philippians 2:1-11.

“Prayer: Eternal God our Shepherd, give to us and to thy Church a new vision and a new charity, a revival of courage and a renewal of Christian unity, that the eternal message of thy Son may be hailed as the good news among men in all the world. In his name. Amen.”

RATIONS 100 DAYS #24

The new house truly became a home this week. It expanded, took a deep breath, and with a few drops of love scattered around each inch of it like flowers in a garden, our home smiled for the first time.

Funny, how old habits, knowledge, and wisdom resurface when needed (such as cutting enough potatoes to feed all those extra mouths yakkinng and laughing in your ear while indulging in a hug or two and singing a song with a Grand). Things that you thought you had thrown to the back of the closet because they wasn’t needed anymore. Day-to-day activities that need to ebb and flow when there are more than two of you in the same home for a period of time.

“Then he taught me, and he said to me,
“Take hold of my words with all your heart;
keep my commands, and you will live.”~ Prov 4:4

I know I’ve written about this before, but I guess talking about forgotten knowledge brought it back to my mind. The Talmud teaches that when we are starting our journey on this plane, Our Father sends an angel to teach us everything that we need to know, and when they are done, they push their finger to our lips and blow it to the back of our “closet”. That little indentation over your top lip – the philtrum – is the physical imprint of your angel’s finger.

The question – why teach us only to make us forget it?

Jewish sages believe that while it is hidden from our physical mind it is still at the back of our closet. Seeking wisdom when we need it reconnects us with the Father who didn’t want to send us without Truth to guide us through this journey. It helps us – begin new journeys again – to smile again – to become ‘made new’.

1942 Ration: “Wherefore, if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things are passed away; behold they became new..”~2 Cor 5:17

After yielding to sin, after once being bogged down in the mire of life, is it possible to get out and be clean once more? Can we, once having conformed to the ways of this sorry world, break loose and be remolded to fit the higher plan that we know God has for us? Can we really forget ourselves and our short comings and live nobly in our own and God’s sight?

“Paul says, “yes, Do not let yourselves be fitted into the scheme of this age, but be cast in a higher form. This you can do by having a ‘new mind’. That is the secret of new life. When we are transformed through belief in Jesus Christ as LORD and Saviour, we are on the way to the ‘Land of Beginning Again’.

“And be not fashioned according to this world, but be ye transformed by the reviewing of your mind.”~Rm 12:2

READ: Romans 12:1-3

PRAYER: O thou Lamb of God who takest away the sins of the world, wash me and me me clean. [Here let us humbly confess those things that keep us from being our best selves.] Establish within me a new sense of thy boundless love and give me more power for living. In thy name I pray. Amen.”

25 NAMES OF CHRISTMAS – GIFT

csscscsToday has been a blessed day. I am still coughing, hacking and whining. I am still plagued by two choc labs who think it is perfectly okay if they jump in any lap available when they are playing (think – homebase in tag). I STILL have not gotten my Christmas cards done. But today was that special- wrapped-with-all-the-trimmings gift placed in my hands by my Father.. How awesome is that? Unbelievably, it happens every day; we just don’t notice it most of the time..

“Every good and perfect gift descends from above, from The Father of lights with whom there is no change nor a shadow of variation.”~James 1:17

T’is the season for giving. Gifts sit under my small little trees. Others sit in bags under the trees’ tables. We are lucky and blessed that we are able to do so much. There has been many years when we scraped the bottom of our coin jar to find enough money to buy our gifts. So this year has been a gift.I think when you are sick, you noticed the little things because you slow your steps to match that jerky, up-and-down pace that is occuring inside your body.

“But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.”~Rm 5:15

If you read yesterday’s post, I talked about going to one of the houses we had put an offer on last week. I didn’t do much but pray and listen. Occasionally, I remember that is the best thing to do. So I was not surprised when we woke up this morning to find a gift awaited us in the form of a text. That houses that had been lost had been found. A counter offer. A decisionto be made. A gift to be opened.

“Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.”~2 Cor9:15

The Christmas Spirit has made its way into our home this year. I wasn’t sure it wm485-lwould. The house is not totally decked out as it usually is. Some of my favorite Chrismtas things remain packed away. Between packing decisions, financial decisions, home decisions, and sleeping decisions (where will I cough less? Chair or bed?), I felt like i was letting the physical push the spiritual out the season. Blessings!Be! that didn’t happen.

It is time to go to that quiet stable. Bend a knee and recieve the gift. What a gift was given us so long ago. What a gift is given us every day, if we will just go to the stable.

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SALE PENDING

Sale-Pending-1-537x404“All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” ~Martin Buber 19th century philosopher
 
We sold our house…well…at least technically…at this point. A real estate sign might say instead: Sale Pending.
This was not the plan. I’ve just gotten to know this house. I can get up in  the middle of the night and not be lost. I know where all the light switches are without looking (no longer turning on the guest bathroom light with the hallway switch). The noise of the dishwasher hums a lullabye as I turn out lights and walk into a darkened room. I can avoid tripping over bulky sleepy dogs because I know their favorite spots . I am comfortable.
Sale pending looms over me.
And now –
Every step along the way of this journey has left me standing in awe of His presence. From procuring the land – to having the perfect couple walk through twice and buy our home – to another offer out of the blue on something else we are in prayer about – to finding a floor plan that shouted “HOME!” when we walked through it – to standing in prayer and seeing the clouds part for a short glimpse of a blood moon (and I do mean short).
“In all your ways acknowledge Him, And he shall direct your path.” Prov 3:6
 
Moving was never part of MY plan. I thought this stop was the end of the moving journey. Our family has moved many times in our journey together. I think my daughters and I counted up 9 times at one point. This was supposed to be the final home. I had my daughter close enough to hug on whenever I needed. Grands to play with at least once a week. Best of all – the house felt like “home”. Gardens grew in sizes and beauty. The neighborhood is a place I walk with familiar names and faces.
And now –
Here I am again. Sale pending. Looking around wondering how many boxes I need. Saving newspaper to wrap fragile junk. Books to lug out the door. Pictures to take down and hopefully – not peel off part of the wall. Walls to touch up. Helpers to procure. A house to plan.
Sale pending.
norman-vincent-peale“Deep within you..nothing is hopeless. You are a child of God, and hope has been planted in ou by God.” ~Norman Vincent Peale. 29th century preacher
There were many things going on in my life when I retired from OH to NC. I won’t say it was a hopeless time, but there were parts of this path that were tearing me up, inside and out. My nature is to hold things pretty close; I am an actress, after all. And – as He often is during tests, God seemed awfully silent and distant. Prayer and holding tight to the WORD were the only things sustaining me. Within 3 monthes of those tough, questioning, fumbling steps, Covenant River Rock became home.
And now –
Here we are again. Dreams evolving. Land waiting to unveil its potential. A house to build. Dogs to unlease. A porch or two to sit on. A journey with a few secret destinations to uncover. I’m sure there will be some stumbling steps along the way, but God seems to be guiding this whole process, so I’m just sitting back and surrending to Him all my concerns, worries and fears.
Sale pending….
 and here we go again.
Hold my hand, Father, hold my hand because this seems totally crazy.
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those that love Him.” 1 Cor 2:9

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DEEP UNTO DEEP

deep-calleth-unto-deepThere is a deep holiness about Ash Wednesday. Harmonic deep waters that flow under me and takes me into a world of which I know little, but one of which I yearn to know so much more. Looking up I see a narrow gate that stands between me and there. I merely have to walk up the hill and walk through. Deep calls unto deep~Ps 42:7.

“On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee.” John 2;1

Yeshua chose to walk up that hill. From that pivotal moment in Cana when his mother looked at Him and said, “They have no more wine”. He knew. Deep called unto deep. He hesitated. Human flesh rebelling. Logical, lineal thinking running interference to sacred, spiritual wisdom. “Woman, why do you involve me?My hour has not yet come.” Deep called unto deep again. Her eyes locked with her child’s. A love prayer floating between them. Seconds? Minutes? Eternity? God time superceded man time. Yeshua nodded, as His eyes lifted to the night skies, and He took a deep breath. Rabbi Yeshua turned back to His mother and Love emanated between them. She nodded as she spoke aloud to the servants, “Do whatever He tells you.” Deep called unto deep.

Life becomes exceedingly complicated when deep comes to deep. Ash Wednesday reminds me of how truly complicated life can be. Deep continuing to call unto deep. The steep path Rabbi Yeshua chose to travel became even rockier and steeper. A dark shadow fell upon the miracle healer, the sought after rabbi, the hunted curse of the priestly Sanhedrin. Did He talk to His mother? His disciples? The birds of the field? His Father? I smile because I know the answer, ‘Of course He talked to His Father’. Deep calls unto deep.

As I draw an ashy finger upon my forehead and breathe in the essence of frankinscence from my oils, I tremble. I watch the news and see those who stand firm in their faith. Through the swing of the sword, slash of the knife, the heat of the fire……they stand. And I? I tremble. The shadow stands over our world tonight just as it did when Rabbi Yeshua looked down the road towards Jerusalem. Deep is calling unto deep. Can I stand like Him or the 1 or the 21 or the 45? Can you? Can our country? The path is getting rockier…steeper…scarier. The gate appears narrower than it did before at the top of the mount.

Ash Wednesday…Deep calls unto deep. And I tremble.

“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”.~1 Cor 15:58

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6 of 7: LOVE

mary6 of 7: LOVE. Old movies always bring a smile to my face. Judy Garland. Gene Kelley. Marjorie Main. Phil Silvers. Fred Astair. Bing Crosby. Rosemary Clooney, June Allison. Tap dancing. Chorus singing harmony. Old songs. Comedic routines that don’t make you cringe. Simple plot lines that keep you smiling.from start to finish. They make you fall in LOVE with LOVE all over again.

When you think about it – that has to be what Our Father was trying to do on that special night so long ago. He didn’t choose a palace for His son. He didn’t send Him as a grown-up with armies at His side. He didn’t pick a well established family of means and reputation. Instead – He chose a young girl betrothed to a simple carpenter from a small town. Sent them to another small little “town” (about 150 people according to historical records) — a town called Bethlehem (translation of name: City of Bread which the teacher in me finds endlessly fascinating) — to give birth to His son and then lay Him in a manger (a place where animals feed which only adds to the strength of the metaphoric picture He was drawing in our world) — so we might fall in LOVE with LOVE. Humble. Simple. Repristination possible.

“Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the kness of God is stronger than men.” 1 Cor 1:25.

Where would you choose to send your son? To a people ruled by others? To poverty? To years in hiding? God is much wiser than we are. The elite – the powerful – those with plenty is not where He sent His son. He wanted all of us to fall on our knees….to fall humbly…to fall in LOVE with LOVE over and over again. Every year, Christmas allows us to remember what “real” LOVE is all about.