Friday, July 29, 2016

everything

To say that when I have come here to write these past days and weeks --everything comes to mind and that I cannot seem to pare it down to decipherable notes or posts-- would be an understatement. We have been moving two households over the past two months and still have projects to do to prepare our former home to sell before mid-August when school begins.

I find myself today, three weeks before summer's end, asking the Father from where the refreshing will come this year. Summertime for us is usually a time of rest and play and of planning and preparing for the upcoming fall and all its busy-ness. It has been His gift to us to have this time to fill our hearts again, to replenish us for the daily days that will gain and gain and gain again a momentum that will extend all the way through next spring.

And so, having had quite the different summer this year, and with an eye to all of its joy and blessings, I wonder how He might make us ready. We are weary. It has been so, so good. It has also been a lot. And so I wonder, and then this morning from my devotion:

"He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end."

I find that I wait and wonder with joy anew.
And He has done it even today, even as I asked.
Refreshing! ♥

Ecclesiastes 3:11

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

the sweet amen

This has been on my heart and in my mind (just can't seem to stop humming the tune) since Sunday morning, and I thought it might be a blessing to you, too. Happy Tuesday ♥

Lead on, O King eternal,
till sin's fierce war shall cease,

And holiness shall whisper
the sweet amen of peace.

For not with swords loud clashing,
nor roll of stirring drums;

With deeds of love and mercy
the heavenly kingdom comes.

from the hymn by EW Shurtleff

Thursday, July 14, 2016

daily grams: joy & thanks

Whew! Just sitting down at my desk for the first time since early this morning, it has been a busy day. We are in high gear here with the move, so it seems that every moment there are three or four things I need to be doing! I have been making a point, though, to have a quiet space of time first thing to meet with the Father, to read His word and a devotion, and to journal a bit. That time has been the mainstay of the days of this adventure summer we are living. How thankful I am!

And so, I wanted to share just a small portion of my reading this morning. I've been looking forward to sharing it here all day long, and I hope it blesses you as it has me ♥

"I may feel disappointment and the despair may flood high, but to give thanks is an action and rejoice is a verb and these are not mere pulsing emotions. While I may not always feel joy, God asks me to give thanks in all things because He knows the feeling of joy begins in the action of thanksgiving."

quote from AnnV

Saturday, July 9, 2016

for this week past & for tomorrow

Father, we cry out to You in our trouble, our heartbreak.
Our country is divided, sorrow-filled, angry, wretched.

Help us remember that there is grace to bear what comes
when we run into Your arms, You who bore all. There is
so much grace there, healing, freedom, peace, love...

Help us remember that when it seems that all fails, You
never fail, and that is why we can always, always give
thanks. Always thanks.

Take our distress and make it beautiful, though we cannot
see for ourselves how. You make all things good for those
who love You.

Help us to be gentle and kind, even when we disagree. Help
us to forgive and give us a blessed forgetfulness, too. May
these days light a deeper, purer devotion to You so that we
can love one another well.

Oh, help us to love one another well.

Make Your presence known in a very special way to all of
the families of those who were killed this week. Let them
be certain of Your great love for them and of our love and
prayers for them.

Heal our land, please.
In Jesus' precious name ♥

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

unless

Unless we make it a habit to give thanks, we often give grief.

Unless we remember to speak praise, we tend to speak poison.

Unless we are intentional about giving God glory throughout the day,
our days give way to grumbling by default.

Unless ♥

from my reading today gently adapted frtom Ann V

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

a treasure map

I woke yesterday morning to a note on my bedside table. I am accustomed to finding them there from time to time when I go up for bed, but this was the first ever to greet me in the morning. It seems that my littlest sweetling had been up since the early morning cutting out paper arrows and making plans for me. The note said that there was treasure waiting to be found and that I must follow the arrows to find it.

So I popped my contacts in and found the first arrow on the banister leading me down the stairs. Discovering arrow after arrow (do you know how challenging it is to draw, color, and cut out lots of little paper arrows?), some in plain sight and some a little tricksy to discover, I was led to my desk and then into one of the drawers to find the treasure.

Another little note :) It says, "I ♥ you Mom." And now it's posted here at my writing desk where I cannot miss it. It reminds me of so much: her face, her smile, her joy, and all of that work. It's also the time she took on Fourth of July morning to lead me step by step to her love. O my heart.

Then there's where that kind of thing comes from in her. I recognize the heart, you see. I know a one who did things like that over and over again all my life to make certain that I knew how very well loved I was. And Ila has never met her, but that Jane-love is living on in her anyway. O my heart.

And there is the much more there, too. The undeniable, gorgeous fact that Christ does that very same thing, has been doing it since the idea for this world was born in His imagination. He's leading us ever toward His love. All we have to do is take a look around to see that every single thing He created directs us to understand that He is everywhere, loving, loving, loving ♥

Monday, July 4, 2016

a birthday prayer

Lord, You have been our dwelling place
throughout all generations.

Before the mountains were born
or You brought forth the earth and the world,
from everlasting to everlasting
You are God.

Teach US to number our days aright,
that we may gain a heart of wisdom.

Lord, please help US to see ♥

from Psalm 90 & me