Tag Archives: Lysa Terkeurst

PHEW AND PRAISE THE LORD

Four hours of walking the push mower. 2 – changes of sweaty clothes. 2 – breaks to gulp water. 2 -15 minute naps. 1 – shower and another set of clothes. One lost ball in a hole under a tree. A dog trying to dig to China through said hole. Praise the LORD – the yard is mowed for another couple weeks and the heat and humidity is on its way out of NC.

Phew!

“The very thing we thought would burn so brightly with joy has turned out to burn us.” Lysa Terkeurst, p93.

Needless to say, the rest of the day has been one of recovery and discovery. The lab girls are still pouting about the ball, but I have been reading and watching the rain clouds accumulate over our house. Painted a wall. Hung a few pictures. Opened my ears. After a busy morning, spending time doing the things I love most is always a good thing.

“I waited patiently for the LORD; He turned to me and heard my cry.”~Ps 40:1

We got an inch of rain on Saturday, so the grass and gardens have been growing steadily despite the 12 days of 90 degrees and humidity that has plumbed the sinuses beyond their tiny cavities. Two zucchinis and several tomatoes later, I am reading my book on the porch and enjoying the breeze that always proceeds the storm. Our Father is good that way. He breathes and those that listen hear the storms’ approach and hunker down for the duration.

“He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.”~Psalm 40:2

Nice thing about storms. They eventually pass. The thunder and lightning that scared me have disappeared over the horizon. My feet are in a firm place. I can wrap my arms around the porch post, feel the rain wash my face of its salty residue and smile. The hopeful prayer I had whispered in my heart at the beginning of June has come true. Grass so thick and soft has grown beyond what I thought possible, and I can walk barefoot in it every morning without a rock bruising my toes (it also stopped the mower a few times). The volunteer tomatoes are so bushy that they cover a good portion of the garden, full of fruit, and beginning to climb the blooming magnolia tree. And the tiny wisteria spouts that I planted a year ago? Well, they are stretching halfway across the portico that covers the patio.

“My hope is tied to the unchanging promise of GOD.”~Lysa Terkeurst, p94

Sometimes, life is just not easy. There are just a lot of storms that pass by in life. The physicality storm that followed mowing this morning did take its toll on this ol’ gal. The back ached even with my new back brace for the hard part of the yard. The knee hurt – even after using the inversion board – but after icing – much improved. The sinuses were swollen but less so after the essential oils. So with a little help the physical storm passed, and I’m ready to let my body yawn, listen to a little Lauren Daigle or Danny Gokey and bury my nose in a book full of hopeful covenants that are never broken.

Phew and Praise the LORD!

Tomorrow is supposed to be in the 70’s, my heart is full of joy, and hope is all around me. After all, this little guy came for a visit – until the hummingbirds kept dive bombing him. Talk about unexpected joy.

Phew and Praise the LORD!

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KA-CHING

The aging or gender app has certainly brought a lot more “seniors” into my feed this week. It has also made me laugh to see my kids look older than I do – at least in my eyes I still look pretty nifty for being in my 69th year. (Hmmm…did I just date myself by using the word “nifty”?)

“Even to your old age and gray hairs
I AM He, I am He who will sustain you.
I have made you and I will carry you;
I will sustain you and I will rescue you.”~Is 46:4

Monday was a ka-ching kind of day. Moved 6 loads of mulch. Walked the dogs, or should I say, played ball with the dogs as they lost said ball in the woods 2 times, and I had to go help them find it. Walking them is always a ka-ching adventure – especially when they get excited and try to knock me over trying to get the ball first.

Then it was time for the wonderful, always-look-forward-to yearly check-up with my specialist for blood tests and all the awesome things they have on a medical checklist for the elders of our culture. I am not about to list it all here, but let me say – my doctor is thorough. Everytime I go in he spends a good half hour with me but this time – all he could say as he left was “Whatever you’re doing, keep doing it! I wish I could see the turn around in all my patients like you’ve made.”

Ka-ching! Ka-ching!

Take that tick disease. It may still be in the background (along with that “wonderful” mono virus that I got in high school), but for now – it was a jump-up-and-down, smile-on-my-face, ka-ching day.

“Even in old age they will still produce fruit; 
they will remain vital and green. 
They will declare, “The LORD is just!
He is my rock!
There is no evil in Him!”~Ps 92:14-15

Yesterday, was also full. Walk. Dogs. Mulch (just four loads today as I am almost out of this load of mulch, and it is way too hot to want to do more – even at 7 AM in the morning). Met a couple friends for lunch and just enjoyed some laughing and learning new things.

When I got home, the dogs were ready to walk again – even in the heat. I love my neighborhood. It is like a very small version of the town I grew up in so long ago. Neighbors call out greetings and sometimes just stop their trucks to chat for awhile. Others mow my roadside grass because they know I don’t have a riding mower. Others play with the lab girls when we meet on our walks. So yesterday as a thank you, I made refrigerator pickles, and in a couple of days will deliver them.

Ka-ching, Ka-ching, Ka-ching.

“But on this forty-eighth birthday I opened the coloring book, and someone had erased all the beautifully drawn lines.”~Lysa Terkeurst, p73.

And then there was today. It was a hard day. Old things popped up that made me reflective. Thoughts strayed and that made me sadder. So I took a nap. But what woke me up was a refrain of a song singing through my dream and shining in my eyes. Our Father sends light into the darkness. My cleaning lady came today as she does once a month, and she shared her sadness with me. I knew then I was right where supposed to be for such a time as this. Even with the language barrier, we were able to communicate about Our Father’s goodness together and the refrain sang again in my heart.

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.”~2 Cor 1:3-4

I don’t like this dark journey that I am on. “It Wasn’t Supposed To Be This Way”. But this is the journey that God continues to bless almost every hour as He goes before me or stands beside me. I feel Him in every step I walk with the dogs and even sitting in my chair as I write. It may be dark now, but I am not fearful or dismayed because that Light continues to shine until morning comes.

Ka-ching, Ka-ching, Ka-ching, Ka-ching.

“Forget the former things;
do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it is bursting out! Do you not perceive it?”~ Is 43;18

NEW CORN, NEW BOOK

Why is the first corn of the season always, always, ALWAYS the best corn of the season? NC corn is on the byways and highways just in time for the 4th of July…….and me? After not eating much for the past few weeks, I am enjoying every bite that is just a wee bit salted and dripping in butter. Which by the way, drips on to whatever bit of clothing I am wearing at the time.

June was a long, long, LONG month. One book closed and right there – by my side – is another. Part of me wants to pick it up. Another part of me, isn’t quite ready to put the effort into even picking it up quite yet. It is a different kind of book. 
Not new. 
Tattered cover. 
A few ripped and stained pages. 
Maybe even a page or two missing. 
It has been stuffed at the very back of my bookshelf for 40 years and is the one that I haven’t even thought about in ever so long – let alone pick it up……..
but there is this tickle. 
A tickle way back of my eyes that keeps pointing at it. 
A tickle that reminds me that I liked reading it long ago. 
A tickle that is hinting that it just may be time to pick it up again and discover whatever wisdom might lie beneath the words it holds.

But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.”~1 Cor 2:9

It is hot in NC this week. Humid, steamy, muggy, yukky hot. My sinuses feel swollen beyond the confines of my normal sized head. So – out come the oils. Inversion board coming up. But sometimes – I’ve found the best thing is to go out and just sweat.

Early in the morning or late, late in the afternoon – – – right after the deepest part of the night has passed or right as twilight begins at night – – – I meander outside with the lab girls. We do our neighborhood walk, and then I get to work and try to avoid the mosquitoes. I have found that I actually love moving wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow of mulch around my small home. The gardens are somewhat dry since we haven’t had a serious rain in a couple weeks, but they are still flourishing. Tomatoes, lettuce, herbs, flowers. God is definitely good, and I see His hand everywhere in the yard with every drop of sweat that falls.

During the heat of the day, if I’m not writing or watching Grands, I head to the bedroom and begin to paint the walls. The knees creak a little more than when I did this a few years back, but I have found that atmosphere is vital when starting a new book and well worth the noisy grunts from various body parts. Best of all is asking the daughter and SIL for help where the walls go much higher than my old knees want to climb.

God is so good.

The new book is still sitting rights beside me. Sometimes I feel like it is inside of me, just waiting to be opened. And because I have this strange curiosity that often gets me into trouble, I peek inside that dusty ol’ book. The Light sparkles around the words that are imprinted there. My eyes are blinded since they are too bright to read for now. Quickly, I slam that book shut once again. I think I will wait a little longer. I know that in time,The Holy Spirit will stop with the tickles and slam me upside the head when the time is exactly right. He just likes to forewarn me – – peak my curiosity – – just like he has for the past couple decades of my life. I don’t really like the “Gibbs slap”, but it does get His point across succinctly.

“We must let God’s WORD become the words of our story.”~Lysa Terkeurst

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DUSTY ENDINGS

I have a really hard time with the ending of a great book. A book full of the dust of someone’s imagination that became a living, breathing creation. A book that kept me reading way too long into the night. A book that woke me up just to read one more chapter before school. A book that molded characters so well that I couldn’t wait to see what happened in their lives or what wisdom they had to share with me. A book whose ending made me want to cry, because I would now watch those same characters that I had come to love, ride off in the sunset far away from me.

“Bye bye love.
Bye bye happiness; hello loneliness.
I think I’m-a gonna cry-y”

Movies – not so much. The time I invest in a movie or TV show is minimal, and half the time – I’m only partially paying attention. Even as a kid, I would read books rather than watch the TV show that was right in front of me. The smell of the paper. The dusty covers. The characters I loved. The sad closing of the covers when it ended.

Either way…endings – are – – well – – – endings – – – – – in life as well as books. The memory of the characters remain, and if it was a really special book, where I learned a lot from them, the strong emotion I attached to them will remain long after I carefully close the cover and the dust settles.  I will see their faces in my mind.  I will hold the gifts they brought me close.  And – at times – I will wish the book was still in my hands.

“Dust doesn’t’ have to signify the end. Dust is often what must be present for the new to begin.”~Lysa Terkeurst.

Even if endings are not my favorite thing, there are good things about closing the cover of a book that final time. Such as, I get to look for a new book to read. Yea. Double yea!Triple yea!! After all, half of the fun of finding a new book is the “seeking” journey. I get to meet new characters. Dream with them. Learn from them. Love them.

Endings – even when they have broken into tiny, tiny pieces of dust that you would think can never be anything meaningful again – always bring new beginnings. Add a little water and you get clay. Add a very talented artisan who knows how to work out the impurities by whittling a little here, a little there, pounding it against a hard surface over and over, molding it, shaping it until He is satisfied with His new creation. Add a puff of air and the ending that was – becomes a new beginning that is. After all…

“In the beginning…The Lord God formed a man from the dust of the earth and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.”~Gen 2:7

Best of all, at the end of my favorite book in the world, is the ending that keeps resonating within me no matter how many times I have carefully closed its cover. Seven words. One sentence.  One promise that I cling to when I feel as if I have crumbled into a dusty pile in the middle of my path. One powerful promise that He sings in my heart over and over and over. A promise that He gathers all those tiny shards from the dust of an ending into his nail scarred hands and shouts over and over to those who listen:

“Behold, I am making all things new.”~Rev 21:5

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THOUGHTSONG SINGS

I haven’t written much lately. Well – that’s not exactly true. I have been writing – – – a lot actually. I just haven’t posted anything to my blog or on FB. The Thoughtsong that flows into the blog or FB has been quiet. So quiet that I wondered if she would sing again. So in corresponding fashion – after all – I have learned over these many years to be silent when the Thoughtsong is not singing in my heart. But tonight, the song began again.

“Declare among the nations: “The LORD reigns!”
The world is firmly established; it cannot be moved…”~Ps 96:10a

The promises of Our Father, written way before I entered the chaos of Terra, are amazing. When His promises live in people of prayer, they are even more amazing. I think that is why Thoughtsong began singing once again. Reciting promise after promise and having prayer warriors reciting promise after promise continue to be all the manna one needs to survive. Thoughtsong is singing once again, and I am beyond thankful to hear her song welling up inside of me.

In the past month, I’ve moved over 100+ wheelbarrow loads of mulch and stone. Watched my plants grow – despite weather that has been all over the charts – and produce fruit (can’t wait for the any-day-now-first tomato). Walked the dogs and thrown a stick more times than I can count – but my elbow knows – in both arms. Groaned in the Holy Spirit until there were no more tears and slept in exhaustion. Waited – not so patiently – as the new song began to form.

“For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.”~Rm 15:4

Prayer as been the wind under my wings. 
Holding. 
Lifting. 
Carrying. 
Loving.
Directing.

A couple days back another prayer warrior dropped off a book for me, It’s Not Supposed To Be This Way  by Lysa Terkeurst. I read the first chapter and cried. I wrote and I wrote about things that God knew already, but these words were for me. I was the one that needed to see – to hear – needed to sing for myself. God hears and listens when we stand on His promises – just not always in the way we expect.

“Sing to the LORD a new song;
sing to the LORD, all the earth.”~Ps 96:1

As I continue to step forward on this new God path, I continue to find the path in the darkness with each of His promises lighting my stumbling, tiny baby steps (I am not courageous enough to take giant steps nor secure enough to be confident). New paths are challenging – hard to navigate. But every day, I become stronger. My clothes hang a little more loosely. My muscles a little sturdier. And thankfully at the end of long days, my kitty curls in my lap while one dog snores behind my chair and the other cuts farts under my feet.

Life – while not how I thought it should be – is how HE thinks it should be, and I gulp another big breath as I prepare to step forward tomorrow. Maybe…even…double gulp …a giant step tomorrow.

“Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and ||mighty things, which thou knowest not..”~Jer 33:3 

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