I run in the path of Your commands, for You have set my heart free! Psalm 119:32, NIV1984

Thursday, June 28, 2012

what I'm remembering while she flies . . .

She was only 11 years old when she told me she wanted to pack her bags and fly across the sea. 

And my heart beat hard inside my chest, and in the silence I cried out, "But God . . . !!!"

I crawled in bed that night in early fall, and I scratched out the prayers of my momma-heart in the bright pink moleskine journal by my bed.  I scribbled down the what-ifs and the hows and the but-what-about questions...and hadn't I asked for this? 

Hadn't I asked God to give her a heart after His, a heart for the world, and a heart that beats hard to make Him known? Hadn't I gone before her and modeled this very thing and prayed she'd follow?  Hadn't I placed the books in her hands, the stories of those who had left everything to follow One?

But God, how can we afford it?

I said to the LORD, "You are my Master!  Every good thing I have comes from You."  Psalm 16:2, NLT

But God, she's so young!  Is she ready?  Can she do this?

"I will bless the LORD who guides me; even at night my heart instructs me."  Psalm 16:7, NLT

But God, who will go with her?

"I know the LORD is always with me.  I will not be shaken, for He is right beside me."  Psalm 16:8, NLT

But God, what will she eat?  Only a tiny bit of the wrong thing, and she'll swell like a pink balloon, her airways will close...and will she fly home to me or fly away to You?

"No wonder my heart is glad, and I rejoice.  My body rests in safety."  Psalm 16:9-11, NLT

So we loaded the car this afternoon, and her 3-year-old cousin sang over and over

Do not be afraid
God is always with you
Be strong.

We pulled away from the house, Gram's eyes bright with tears, and we drove her to the airport with my dad.  And together with a thoroughly eclectic team of 10 who love Jesus, my firstborn and my father flew across the sea to serve.

And Lord willing, in 10 days, they'll fly back home to us here...to us waiting and praying like breathing...to us trusting our God because He is good.

O LORD, you have examined my heart
and know everything about me.
You know when I sit down or stand up.
You know my thoughts even when I'm far away.
You see me when I travel
and when I rest at home.
You know everything I do.
You know what I'm going to say
Even before I say it, LORD.
You go before me and follow me.
You place your hand of blessing on my head.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
Too great for me to understand!
I can never escape from Your Spirit!
I can never get away from Your Presence!
If I go up to heaven, you are there;
If I go down to the grave you are there.
If I ride the wings of the morning,
If I dwell by the farthest oceans,
Even there your hand will guide me,
And your strength will support me.
Psalm 139:1-10, NLT

Pin It

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Giving Thanks . . . Summer Camp Edition

Do not call to mind the former things,
Or ponder the things of the past.
Behold, I will do something new,
Now it will spring forth;
Will you not be aware of it?
I will even make a roadway in the wilderness,
Rivers in the desert.
Isaiah 43:18-19, NASB

Continuing to count His gifts and grace . . .

1337  birthday phone call from a friend far away
1338  text messages from friends, cousins, mother-in-law
1339  kids pitching in to help, making the work go quickly
1340  husband helping me get the kids ready to go
1341  her laughter as she tells the story
1342  patient kids, no complaining over the wait for the broken-down bus
1343  lightning storm
1344  cold wind blowing through
1345  the kindness of the camp staff
1346  a toothbrush & toothpaste!
1347  high school students loving on my firstborn, first-time camper
1348  cloud cover during the day
1349  clear, starlit night
1350  spending time with students, unplugged
1351  grass growing again after drought
1352  flowers growing straight up out of rock
1353  side-by-side with students & my firstborn on the Sherpa trail
1354  students coming with question after question
1355  their wonder at His Word
1356  hungry hearts
1357  hearing them process the awesome vastness of God
1358  hands lifted in praise
1359  river baptisms
1360  our faithful youth minister who prays and serves and loves like Jesus
1361  youth staff who continue to pour themselves out
1362  camp pastor who loves students and the Word
1363  driving home 5 hours - time with my dad
1364  that my boy-child loved every moment at his camp
1365  prayers for him answered beyond my wildest expectation 
1366  this hope:  that God is doing something new

The people I formed for Myself
will declare My praise.
Isaiah 43:21, NASB

Pin It

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Not My Home

It's been one of those days.  Before I walk out the door into the humid morning, I grab my necklace off the counter and catch it on a doorknob.  The silver snaps.

At the pool storage closet, sweat runs down our backs and drips down the sides of our faces as we lug tents to our cars.  The bags have already ripped along the seams.

In the sweaty mess of hauling tents, the prayer bracelet that I'm wearing in preparation for camp . . . the one with the name of the student for whom I'm praying specifically . . . the bracelet just like the ones we wear every year that make it all the way through camp and the river and the mud and the rocky cliffs . . . that bracelet falls right off my wrist.  The glue doesn't hold.

Home quickly to let the dog out and check email . . . then off again . . . but I can't find my shoes.  The dog has them under the table.  He's enjoying one of my shoes as his morning snack.

And I drive to the church wondering about this broken world . . . about silver that snaps and tent casings that rip and glue that doesn't hold . . . about my sharp tongue that should be refined as silver before the Lord . . . about hearing stories at the poolside this morning of cancer treatment and how what's meant to heal can hurt, these bodies just broken tents not made to last . . . about families I love who have decided that the glue wouldn't hold and have ripped right apart down the middle.

I think about shoes with holes in the soles . . . and kids with holes in their souls . . . kids who'll go to camp next week to escape their broken homes and kids who'll go because their parents just desperately hope someone will reach them . . . kids with soul-holes that can only be filled by the Mender and Healer of Broken Things.

So I grab the orange duct tape and fix the yellow prayer bracelet.  And I pray that our God who makes all things new, our God who does so much more than duct-tape-fix what's broken, will refine us as silver . . . that He'll take these broken tents and make something beautiful . . . that the One who is before all things and in whom all things hold together will be the glue to mend and to fill and that He will reconcile to Himself all things. Because it's been one of those days . . . the kind that reminds me:  

This world is not my home.

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappearedAnd the sea was also gone.  And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.  I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, "Look, God's home is now among His people!  He will live with them, and they will be His people.  God Himself will be with them.  He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain.  All these things are gone forever."  And the One sitting on the throne said, "Look, I am making everything new!" 
Revelation 21:1-5, NLT


Pin It

Monday, June 11, 2012

Giving Thanks . . . Shade & Shelter Edition

Those who live in the shelter of the Most High
will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
This I declare about the LORD:
He alone is my refuge, my place of safety;
He is my God, and I trust Him.
For He will rescue you from every trap
and protect you from deadly disease.
Psalm 91:1-3, NLT

Continuing to count His gifts and grace . . .
1318  hearing the testimony of one rescued from darkness
1319  godly women gathered around her in prayer
1320  walking down shaded sidewalks and how it reminds me 
1321  afternoon light
1322  sunlit rooms
1323  the scent of honeysuckle in the air
1324  watching my firstborn sign for one who can't hear the coach
1325  that she jumped in with a group she didn't know to serve a community she loves
1326  parents pitching in to help, smiles on their faces
1327  seeing her laugh with her friends
1328  that she's perfectly happy to come in 5th or 6th or 7th
1329  ceilings like artwork above the indoor pool
1330  seeing her swim laps after the meet just for fun!
1331  butterfly floating down over the pool as she & Grandad swam the butterfly
1332  husband staying home with a our sick boy
1333  his head in my lap - and that he still wants his mom when he's sick
1334  12-yr-old boy giving his leg to the Compassion child he sponsors
1335  timely reminder that God knows when our brook has run dry
1336  shopping with my mom for my kids' first trip to camp
To all who mourn in Israel,
He will give a crown of beauty for ashes,
a joyous blessing instead of mourning,
festive praise instead of despair.
In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks
that the LORD has planted for His own glory.
Isaiah 61:3, NLT


Pin It

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Giving Thanks . . . Summer Reading Edition

Long ago the LORD said to Israel:
I have loved you, my people with an everlasting love.
With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.
Jeremiah 31:3, NLT

Continuing to count His gifts and grace . . .

1292  tree-lined streets
1293  standing under the night sky, everything coming around right as I
          consider the heavens
1294  husband making the grocery store run and prepping the food
1295  watering plants in the early morning 
1296  this song:  "Ocean"
1297  this lyric:  "something about the sunrise reminds me of your
          faithfulness" (Ten Shekel Shirt)
1298  this promise 
1299  windchimes in the backyard
1300  morning light across counters and cabinets
1301  hearing a former student powerfully teach God's Word
1302  that sliver of blue sky peeking through the clouds
1303  butterfly floating through the flowers
1304  clouds bringing relief from the heat
1305  teamwork
1306  unexpected time with old friends, catching up
1307  my mom and dad jumping in to help
1308  that they came to watch the kids swim
1309  her smile as she handed me her ribbon
1310  his quiet, unpretentious way
1311  praying with friends
1312  former students coming by my classroom on Sunday
1313  pancake supper at Gram & Grandad's
1314  holding those sweet toddler hands
1315  sun rising over the trees
1316  reading in the backyard and by the pool
1317  revisiting a favorite book

It is the LORD who provides the sun to light the day
 and the moon and stars to light the night,
and who stirs the sea into roaring waves.
His name is the LORD of Heaven's Armies,
and this is what He says:
"I am as likely to reject my people Israel
as I am to abolish the laws of nature!"
This is what the LORD says:
"Just as the heavens cannot be measured
and the foundations of the earth cannot be explored,
so I will not consider casting them away
for the evil they have done.
I, the LORD, have spoken!

Jeremiah 31:35-37, NLT


Pin It
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...