Friday, July 31, 2009

Fishing with Jesus

scattered thoughts...

random tasks...
having a hard time grasping the next thing...
"Cast off and throw your nets out."
"But we've been doing this all night."
"I know, just go and do what I said."
murmers, wondering
what could he be thinking?
"Look at that, hey, we need help, come over."
"Fish, tons of fish!!"
"You're kidding, we've been out all night with nothing to show for it."
"Well, we've got a catch now, help us, our nets are breaking."
"Okay, okay, we're coming."
"Wow, I see what you mean! C'mon, lean in fellas, we've got work to do."
The master fisherman/carpenter/teacher smiles from shore and waits for his fishing friends to come in.
Lord, help me to pull it together, to get my nets into the water when you tell me, too. Pull me out of my complacency and help me fish with you.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

An Example from the Word, by the Word

"Very early in the morning, while it was still dark,
Jesus got up,
left the house
and went off to a solitary place,
where he prayed.
Simon and his companions went to look for him,
and when they found him,
they excaimed:
"Everyone is looking for you!"
Mark 1:35-37

I have to admit that getting to the Word is often difficult. Doesn't seem to matter how early I get up or how late I stay up, someone is always looking for me...and they always find me. I get terribly frustrated by the intrusions. This morning as I meditated on the words above a sleepy, still warm from bed little body inserted herself into the space between me and the Word, not talking, just needing to wake up slowly in a safe and comfortable space.

At first I was annoyed with the intrusion, rushing thoughts in my head..."how am I supposed to get close to the Father when I'm always interrupted?" as I shifted my bible and journal and devotional book and pen to make a place for this wee treasure. My mind wonders how Jesus can relate to mothers with many children always interrupting...

...I look down again at the passage I am reading, he had gone off by himself, sneaking away while it was dark to get a minute with his father...but they were looking for him...

...and they found him, bursting into holy moments they had no idea of. I wonder if they clued in, these noisy, uncouth men, did they know that they were interrupting communion? Probably not, the need of the now consumed them. But, Jesus didn't tell them to get lost, he didn't even rebuke them or tell them what he had been doing, simply got up and led them to minister somewhere else.

I shifted my books again and brought my little girl a bit closer to my heart, a little closer to my holy moment. I pray that this morning she felt her mamma draw her near to the father even just a little as the Word showed me how it's done.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Awakening (550)

I find myself in the unusual position of having only 2 kids at home. All 4 boys are off somewhere else. It is exceedingly quiet. My dear husband's plans for today were rained out, so he is taking a much needed rest on the living room floor watching a movie with the girls. One can almost hear oneself think, it's a little shocking to my synapses!

I wrapped myself up in a blanket (it's really quite chilly today) and lay on the couch to finish reading Off the Map by Sandy Rosen. This book is the story of their 5 year journey from sea to sea with a motley crew of believers taking the gospel of Jesus to the streets and towns of Canada. They would only go as the Lord opened the doors, they only had the finances that God provided as they went. These are the stories of how God showed up when His people took Him seriously. An inspiring adventure to see the least. Also a reminder of what God has done in our lives as we have stepped out in faith to meet Him. We have stories to tell like those in that book. We are in the middle of just such an adventure, living in a tiny town on a tiny farm with 6 kids and a big God. We are out here because He moved us here. We believe that He wants to do amazing things in this little part of the world to affect our province and our nation - we believe it and we will stick here until we see it happen or He moves us to another place.

This weekend the nation is coming to visit whether our little town knows it or not. We are having a gathering at a little lake between our town and the next to worship and announce that Jesus is Lord on the prairies. We are going to rattle the heavens a little and people are coming from across the country to join us, because they, too, believe that something is about to break loose here and want to see it happen. I wasn't much excited about the whole thing a few weeks ago quite honestly. We're involved in the planning, we're going to be in the midst of it, but I have been so wrapped up in my own exhaustion and spiritual inadequacy that I haven't been paying the thing any mind.

However, in the last few weeks God has been awakening my spirit again. Starting to blow off the apathy that so pervades this region, awakening me from spiritual slumber, taking the plugs out of my ears so I can once again hear Him whispering to my heart the things He wants to do. We will be swept up by Him once again, caught in His Spirit, listening to His heart and doing what He says...

548. The gifts he has planted in us to share with others, are a gift.
549. The gifts that God has given to his body to be shared, are a gift.
550. The freedom we still enjoy to worship in the middle of a field, is a gift.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Week (547)

This week my friend and 5 of her kids were out for the week. Usually, we enjoy ourselves and have a great time, however, we have dubbed this week, the terribe, rotten, horrible, no good, very bad week....

Monday morning - my youngest son cuts holes in the trampoline with a pair of scissors
Monday afternoon - our two oldest daughters disappear without a trace for about 45 minutes due to a lack of communication. We had no idea where they were and could not find them anywhere
Tuesday morning - S & S (our 5 year olds) decide they've had enough of VBS, excuse themselves to go to the bathroom and don't come back. So, while I am teaching ladies how to make a purse, the VBS director comes in to inform me that my son and his friend are no where to be found and are not on the church grounds or in the building. So, after checking the nearby parks and grandma's house we come back to the church, they haven't returned. ONe of the ladies I'm teaching says she saw them heading in the direction of our farm. I head out once again and find them, hand in hand, walking the gravel road toward home. We were not amused, even if they were pretty cute.
Wednesday evening - Elizabeth falls and cuts her hand on glass, badly. The good news is that I prevailed upon my friendship with the doctor's wife and headed over to their house with her because the cut was really deep. Fortunately, because of where it was located, right in the fold of her finger, we didn't have to go for stitches.
Thursday morning - the SS team gets up super early and heads out to trash the neighbors quad that he left where he was going to build fence near our field. If that wasn't bad enough, when we have assessed the damage and informed the neighbor and go to head into town, my keys are missing. The boys had used them to try to start the quad and lost them. We sent out the team and they were able to find them under the quad. We spent an hour after lunch relocating all the stuff that they had tossed off the quad. We are even less amused with our sons.
Thursday afternoon - We take the crew over to Uncle Bill's where the uncles have rigged up a movie theater to amuse all the cousins. As we're getting out I swing the door shut at the exact moment that my friend's baby inserts his index finger into the hinge of the door. Let the screaming begin. We head back to town for stitches (4 of them) in his tiny little finger.
Thursday evening - We are heading home from the uncle's when my oldest yells to stop the vehicle as screams are emanating from the back seat. My youngest son has managed to get his arm stuck out the window and can't get it back in.
Friday morning - the SS team is at it again and they let the dogs in the house. One of my second oldest son's webkins is later found eaten by the dogs (that particular son is off in Ottawa with his dad - did we mention that the daddy's weren't here this week? well they weren't)

So, we need to be thankful that this wasn't worse than it was....what are our gifts from this terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad week?

539. No one is dead.
540. We found all the missing persons.
541. I was definately praying a lot.
542. We've had some very teachable moments with our sons.
543. The ladies in the ladies' time out where very good sisters in surrounding us with hugs and prayers throughout this week.
544. We really did have a good time at VBS.
545. We've had some good times with our oldest boys reminiscing about all the stupid things they did when they were 5.
546. We are thankful the big boys didn't do anything too foolish since they are capable of doing things that are far more dangerous and foolish.
547. We remembered to keep our eyes on Jesus and not walk in fear.

Friday, July 17, 2009

addition to wonderful tastes....

Sorry K, Salsa gets its very own post. Cause salsa is definately a gift from God and deserves recogition as such. Not just any salsa mind you...the recipe I make, which isn't originally mine or anything, its just perfect salsa, really.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Wonderful Tastes (537)

Taste. What an amazing gift, so unique to each person, what I love, you hate. Such variety...

516. Chocolate, melting in your mouth...I'm partial to those Lindt ball chocolates - hint, hint.
517. Creamy Earl Grey Tea with just the right amount of sugar and milk.
518. The first chip
519. Really good pizza.
520. baked potato with butter and salt (Krista I tried the cheese whiz thing and that totally rocks)
521. perfectly cooked steak
523. Ginger beef at Genesis
524. Crab rangoon also from Genesis
525. the noodle bowl at Saigon Rose
526. Thai Chicken Salad from Alexander's
527. spring rolls
528. penne alla campasino from Chianti's
529. Any really richly flavored soup. I could get probably 20 more if I start listing all the soup I love to taste!! potato/sausage/dill borsht, cabbage borsht, hamburger soup, corn chowder, mushroom cheddar chowder, chicken noodle.... I really could go on, I love soup, it truly is a gift from God. I once had pumpkin soup, wow was that good.
530. cheese sauce - homemade of course, rocks...yumm
531. sweet and sour meatballs or ribs

okay I better stop I'm making myself hungry, I haven't even gotten to things like fruit
532. fresh peas out of the garden
533. corn on the cob dripping in butter and salt
534. fresh salad greens with dill and oil and vinegar dressing
535. strawberries
536. grapes
537. cherries

really, I have to stop. No wonder I'm overweight, apparently I like food!! Have a happy day.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Wonderful Sounds (515)

After yesterday's post on smells I lay in my bed, listening. I realized there are many gifts that God has given through our senses. So today, I want to hear, wonderful sounds of God, walking in my day...

501. Cries of, "Mommy, I missed you." as they tumble in the door from a week at camp.
502. Stories spilling out of excited lips of all they've learned and done and friends they've made while they were away.
503. Deep breathing as they finally sleep.
504. Lisping prayers as a little one learns to talk to her Father.
505. A polite decline rather than, "I hate that!"
506. Sweet quiet as I listen to siblings talk, glad to all be together again, content, watching a favorite movie.
507. Birds singing in the still damp trees.
508. Rain hitting the window, you can almost hear the thristy earth drinking it up.
509. The hum of the sewing machine as something lovely takes shape under my hands.
510. Husky night time, "I love you's."
511. An 'hello' from a voice you haven't heard for awhile.
512. Worship music spilling from the CD player, lifting my spirit, reminding me of who God is.
513. Outdoor nights sounds of crickets and frogs and birds and dogs.
514. The comforting hum of the dishwasher that tells me that things are cleaned up for another day.
515. My Father's voice, whispering to me that he loves me, leading my heart on the path of righteousness, perhaps I can't hear it with my physical ears, but my heart can, all the same.

Sounds of life and love. Life is messy and sometimes the sounds are strident, but we are hear and we can hear the cadence of life - present and accounted for. Thank you Lord.

Friday, July 10, 2009

wonderful smells (500)

As I was driving home today I was thinking about wonderful smells. What a gift God has given us in wonderful smells. I was going to say close your eyes and let the memories of these smells waft over you but then you couldn't read them. I've heard it's very hard to read with your eyes closed unless you are familiar with Braille. Anyways, this is a bit of my 'wonderful smells that are gifts' to add to my growing list.

478. the scent of rain hanging in the air
479. freshly washed children
480. bread coming out of the oven
481. lemon anything
482. gardenias
483. pepperming
484. vanilla
485. garlic and onions sauted in butter
486. oregano
487. pumpkin pie
488. sage dressing
489. campfires
490. freshly dug earth
491. the clean scent of the earth after the rain has fallen
492. laundry just out of the dryer
493. laundry just off the line, dried by the sun
494. Murphy's soap
495. satsuma oranges
496. coconut
497. shea butter
498. green apples
499. my husband
500. I can't think of anymore right now, but my family just drove up and after a few days apart, seeing them in a few seconds will be a gift

Feel free to add to my 'wonderful smells' list, I'm pretty certain I haven't covered them all.

Kathrin and Sabrina, you really ought to come visit you know...both of you...together.

Monday, July 06, 2009

the beginning of summer gifts (477)

We've just returned from family camp. It was different this year than it has been in other years. Good but different. I read a lot, was somewhat anti-social and ran after my three year old for the most part. I think I need to add to my gratitude list, it's about that time...

449. I am thankful for authors that make me think outside my boxes. I've read some excellent books recently and I am pondering them.
450. My little girl snuggled on my bed with me while I read my book this morning it was nice to have her warm little body curled up next to mine, not demanding, just being.
451. The opportunity to just sit in bed and read for awhile this morning was almost magical, I could use a few more like that.
452. It is a gift to be decisive sometimes and think quickly.
453. I am glad for deadlines. There are times when it is very good to know that something will be done at a certain time and after that time comes, and you've completed that task, you won't be doing that thing again.
454. Summer camp is such a gift, giving parent and child a little space from each other so that both can grow.
455. FUnny moments with my children are a gift...This conversation occurred while we were discussing the things that can wreck a garden and weeding. "I think the golfers could really wreck a garden, couldn't they mom?" I am thinking, "Golfers?" Out loud I say, "I guess if they're swinging near the garden, but..." I stop myself as I look around and suddenly realize he doesn't mean golfers, he's talking about GOPHERS!! "Yes, son, gophers can definately wreck a garden." To myself, "But golphers would certainly be no help either." I have a good chuckle as we weed and I picture a bunch of guys in their polo shirts swinging away in my corn patch.
456. I am excited to report that I have had my first really good idea for a story since I don't know when. I haven't felt like writing anything beyond the drivel I put on here for almost two years. To have a spark of inspiration is a wonderous thing.
457. Insight is a gift not to be overlooked. When sudden awareness of the foundation to a problem suddenly shows itself it is a lovely gift, wrapped in embossed paper and tied with a silken ribbon.
458. The train finally came and the grain is being hauled, thanks be to God.
459. Rain on a dry and weary land is a gift. Still I wonder if it was too little, too late. Lord, help me not be anxious when I look at our sparse fields.
460. Finding a package of Greek marinade in the cupboard after I just purchased a package of ribs - I guess we'll see if it was a gift at supper time tonite!!
461. Fresh baked foccacia bread - yum, if that's not a gift, I don't know.
462. Cooperation.
463. Terms of endearment.
464, A freshly weeded garden.
465, a package of cookies left over from somewhere, so i don't have to bake
466, that my little girl loves to color and that she'll stay occupied for a LONG period of time if coloring is a wonerful thing
467. watching my children make friends with former strangers - a gift indeed
468. listening to the wise words of my husband as he counsels heartbroken young boys as he tucks them into bed
469. the wisdom to know when to say no to yet another road trip wasn't just a gift to me but to my children
470. the writings and thoughts of a dad who went unexpectedly - a gift to his kids, oh to be a parent who leaves such lovely things behind
471. the renewal of friendships long neglected
472, the words, "I'm on my way home."
473. putting the last of the laundry into the dryer
474. seeing a stain come out
475. the ability to make clothing for my children
476. the ability to make yummy things to eat
477. the greeting of my canine friends as we return home

I guess I'll quit for now, my train of thought has been derailed and I must get back to business. Thanks for reading. Thanks to those who stop me every now and then and tell me they read. I like that...maybe I'll start writing that story right here...sneak previews or something. I think I'll start something like this...

I have now accomplished what I wanted to do since I was a little girl. So now what?

what do you think? a good opening line or a little weak?