Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Savior is Born

I am reading Grace for the Moment Morning and Evening Journal by Max Lucado, this excerpt from the book is my favorite, it describes it so beautifully... so beautifully.

She brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped
Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger.
Luke 2:7, NKJV

Christ grew in Mary until he had to come out. Christ will grow in you until the same occurs. He will come out in your speech, in your actions, in your decisions. Every place you live will be a Bethlehem, and every day you live will be a Christmas. You, like Mary, will deliver Christ into the world.

“Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col. 1:27 NIV).

Grace for the Moment Morning and Evening Journal By Max Lucado

Merry Christmas

Sunday, December 18, 2011

payback is a dish best served coaled

Dear Nephew,

I have loved you since you were just a tiny peanut in your mother’s tummy
I loved you when you were lying in an incubator in the hospital weighing in at just a few pounds holding back the tears as I saw so many tubes and wires hooked up to your tiny little body not knowing if I would ever see you grow up. 

But God had you in the palm of His hand and I have been truly blessed to watch you grow into a fine young man, blessed indeed.
I look back on these precious 13 years we have spent together…

The time you feed me a piece of juicy fruit gum laced with chili powder
The endless mac and cheese and chicken nuggets I ate with you, I have never been able to look at those food groups quite the same again

The bouquet of stickiness you got stuck in my hair that had to be CUT OUT
The time you thought it was a good idea to lead me on a bike ride through a construction zone, the marks of that little field trip forever tatooed on my body.

The entire weekends I spent putting back together what you thought was a good idea to take apart
I still can’t get the door on my cabinet to shut properly

Our fifth spin on the tilt-a-whirl at the fair, I am not even gonna go there, but we both know what happened… I told you so
The time you programmed my cell phone… to GERMAN

When you drove my car into a pole, okay so that was my fault I should have waited until you were five to teach you how to drive
But I have to say you truly outdid yourself this last time, you got Auntie good hiding Bailey the Basset Hound’s toy mouse under my end table, and it is with much love that I give you this gift of coal for Christmas this year. I hope you understand it was all I could afford.  I had to spend the money I saved for your Christmas present on my visit to the emergency room after I ran into a wall and thought I broke my nose scrambling from the beady eyes that glared menacingly at me from underneath my table …thinking they were real.

A precious 13 years indeed.
Merry Christmas sweetheart I love you very much,
Love, Auntie Kandi

Ps. Payback is a dish best served coaled

(I did get my nephew a real Christmas gift, but I think I am going to let him sweat it out a bit thinking all he getting from me is a chunk of coal)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

two plans

A man’s heart plans his way, but the LORD directs his steps.  Proverbs 16:9

I had a plan
A good plan

A solid plan

A practical plan
An attainable plan

My plan was normal and it was reasonable, I liked my plan it was safe and made sense to me, God’s plan did not, it defied my normal reasoning power of logic challenged my sensibilities and threatened my comfort zone.
We will see more and more that we are chosen not because of our ability, but because of the Lord’s power, which will be demonstrated in our not being able.  Corrie Ten Boom.

It was planted as a tiny seed many years ago, God’s plan that is, and at one time I thought that was the direction I was headed in, the pieces falling into place and I felt the wondrous excitement like watching the first snow fall of the season, the first tulip born in spring or the first warm summer morning spent on my patio in quiet time, I could see the future  dawning through the new season and God’s plan coming full circle, I nurtured the plan and held it like precious cargo in the palm of my hand.
I never did see that plan come to fruition, real life found me instead and that tiny seed was buried under the first snow fall of the season, washed away with the spring rains and burned off under the heat of the summer sun and it looked like nothing more than a fanciful notion of an overactive imagination, clearly I misunderstood, and I started weaving together my solid.practical.attainable plan, I liked my plan, I nurtured my plan and held it like precious cargo in the palm of my hand, I liked my plan better anyway it was reasonable and made sense to me.

It was an ordinary day looking not much different from the ones that preceded it, when the soil of the little pot where that tiny seed was planted many years ago became unsettled and blooms began to push through the black earth that kept that tiny seed covered and protected.
Oh c’mon!!

I have often mused that I have the amazing ability to get lost in my own driveway, and that is exactly where I was, turned around and lost in my own driveway, I was facing south driving north and ended up somewhere in the east. I started to resemble one part Scooby-Doo running in 5 different directions at the same time and one part Deputy Dog in his deep dopey voice “which way do I go, which way do I go.”
I searched the secret chambers, those chambers we keep hidden away and never speak of what lay beyond their dusty doors because they are not practical or reasonable but rather colored in all shades of ridiculous to the human eye. The chamber where I filed away the plan I clearly misunderstood in the filing cabinet of “dreams I thunk up on my own.”

And those who heard it said, “Who then can be saved?’ But He said, “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.” Luke 18:26-27.
So I stop

Stop and listen for His voice
Stop and listen to the scriptures I am reading

Stop and step back and listen to the words He is speaking around me
I am still seeking, still wondering still questioning, still really not knowing if I heard Him right or if I am just grasping at straws.

So it is one step one tiny little step one day at a time as I feel around for His hand on my shoulder guiding me in the way I should go.
We may not understand God’s plan, but He does.  Seek Him first and trust His answer, even when it is mired in every conceivable color of “that doesn’t make sense.”

“So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; it shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.” Isaiah 55:11
I am linking up with Tracy for Winsome Wednesday.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

I don’t want to ever… and an award

Sweet Rewards

The angels stood on alert, looking on intently, quietly, they were warmed up and ready to go and as soon as the Father gave the word they would be earth bound, when a young angel in training with a sweet cherub voice broke the silence.

“We have to do something. Don’t you see where she is headed?” a sense of urgency in his voice for the situation they were witnessing, his feet floating a few inches off the ground ready to take flight before the word was given.
“Not yet” the older and wiser angel replied, stretching one arm across the novice angels chest and the other on his shoulder to bring him back down, “the Father has her well protected, we just have wait our turn.”

The senior angel admired his young charges enthusiasm, he was going to make a good case worker one day but for now he had a lot of learning to do the first being that the humans had to make the choice for themselves and on this day their newest assignment was going to do just that, say yes to God.
I have often mused that God didn’t give me a choice, I was in a pit and no matter hard I tried I couldn't get out I just kept sinking deeper, but I did have a choice the pit or Him, not choices I particularly liked at the time but I did have a choice and I chose Him.

I look at my life sometimes and wonder why God chose this for me, I am not talking about the obvious answer, I know that we are all God’s children chosen by Him and I am certainly not complaining I have been blessed beyond measure, but the deeper question, why ME?  Because it seemed like the neverending storm of Him pursuing me, relentlessly, why? Why me? Why pursue ME the way He did?

I ask that question because before God my life was a series of two steps back but never one step forward trying to get my attention, but I look around this world and there are people who live charmed lives and have absolutely no relationship with God or the one they do have is very limited in perspective, they have no reason to depend on God and they don’t, for their resources are plentiful and the storms are few, so why choose ME? I don't know if this makes sense to anyone, but I still stand in amazement at the lengths He went to get my attention.

I am just a regular person from middle America who works a regular job, drives an 11 year old car, and lives in a 1000 square foot house that was built sometime in the 1940’s. I have been in God’s chop shop on more than a few occasions, my inner workings stripped and rebuilt more than once, He has dried up my finances, fired me from jobs, I have mended a few broken hearts, I went through a season where I attended the funerals of six family members in one year and endured an incredibly lonely stint of isolation.

Before Him I was barely limpin along and a life after Him that is wholly dependent and crazy in love with Him, I wonder why He chose me for the storms I have walked through to lead me to this life that is so insanely blessed. 
I don’t ever want to get to that place where my dependency on God is limited or that I think something will never happen to me based on a false sense of security in my own resources.

I don’t ever want to be in that place where Christianity means one hour on Sunday mornings and a laundry list of prayer requests for myself, but never really having that deep connected relationship with Him.
I don’t ever want to get to comfortable that I forget that I am where I am not by anything I did because I worked hard and made the right choices, I am where I am because of God’s favor, because I certainly don’t deserve the life I have been given.

I don’t want to ever get to that place where the resources are plentiful and the storms are few that I stop seeing the power of God work through impossible circumstances to witness a beautiful ending that makes absolutely no sense in this human world.

And now for the awards, sorry it has taken me a while but here they are:

Tracy at My daily walk in His grace awarded me the Liebster blog award, so now it is my turn to pass it on.

Lisa, at A Moment with God, Lisa is a precious gift from God and her blog encourages me every day, God knew what He was doing when He brought Lisa into my life, I always discover new scripture through her writing that speaks so clearly to me, I am so honored to have a sister in Christ like Lisa.

Eileen at The Scenic Route, I met Eileen through a blog carnival hosted by Rachel Olsen from Proverbs 31 about a year ago, Eileen has been the best friend I never met in real life, her posts always make me laugh with her funny anecdotes.
Kendra aka Pinks at Relying on Him, Kendra found me and she is another gift from God, I started reading her blog when she first started writing and I have been following her ever since, her heart transparent and her words becoming more beautiful each time I read them.

Phil from Inspirations from Phather Phil, oh Phil what I can say about you? Inspiring, uplifting, encouraging.  Phil is the brother I never had, and if I had one I would want him to be Phil, his love for his wife and kids is beautiful, I love reading his e-mails to God every day.

Deane at Who is God, Deane’s teaching is practical and straight forward, I still have so much to learn in my walk with God and I always learn something new I can apply to my life from Deane, the comments she leaves for me are always inspiring and encouraging.

I could only choose five, but I wanted to choose so many more, so I encourage you check out the blogs I love list on my sidebar because I love their blogs as well and I blessed to know each and everyone of them.

The End.

Sunday, December 4, 2011


I tried valiantly, but the words were not flowing, and after several attempts of  forceably trying write a post that was clearly out of the will of God (I think I dozed off a few times while I was proof reading it) I am recycling one of the very posts I ever wrote, it will be a new to many of you because back then no one read my blog. 

Lions and Tigers and Bears Oh My!

Ok so it is more like Bald Eagles, Cardinals, Blue Jays and Beavers.

“C’mon lets go” my friend yelled standing two feet away in the patio door that leads to my backyard.

“Shhhhh quiet, you are going to scare them away, come take a look at this” I said in little more than a whisper.

Exasperated and growing impatient she steps out onto the patio to take a look. “It is a bird” she says.
“It is not just a bird, look at it, it’s a Cardinal, I think there is a family of them living up there” I said pointing up into the 50 year old maple tree that is still standing tall in my backyard.

“Ok, so it is a Cardinal, I think we learned about those in the first grade, c’mon lets go”.

“If there is any doubt in your mind that God exists, that bird right there is proof that He does”.

“It’s a bird”.

So my friend was completely missing my point, and I am not giving up hope that some day she will see the beauty in what I saw in my backyard that afternoon. Living in Wisconsin we don’t see many Cardinals, our state bird is the Robin, and Cardinals don’t come around for a visit very often, but when they do, it is hard to miss them. I had Cardinals and Blue Jays living in my back yard that summer, looking quite intentional with their color palette of blues and reds so bright that it is unmistakably God who created them, and rather than containing these colors, He created a bird to bestow them upon, to swoop and dart through the air for all the world to see, and they were living in the tree in my backyard, and they stuck around all summer keeping me company.

I saw many miracles that summer, A long neck crane cooling himself in the pond across the street, Cardinals and Blue Jays gliding through the air over head, a beaver slithering its way into the water and a bald eagle perched on a lamp post that had the entire neighborhood out to watch, and when it spread its wings and took flight I don’t see how anyone can deny how great our God is to create such a beautiful and spectacular creature.

Ever wonder where God is in your life? Just look around, He could have created the world to be black and white and we would be none the wiser, but He didn't, instead He chose to bless us with blue skies and rainbows after a storm, green grass and leaves that change color in the fall.  He blessed us with the daisies of the field, and the sweet scent of a rose, He sent His Son, He didn't have to but He did.