Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Birthday Girl

The flames flickered on the five candles which stood tall atop the fanciful cake. The chin of the birthday girl rested upon her hands as she stared with a broad smile at the sweet treat. The orange flames flickered as others around her sang...happy birthday...and they watched the candles light dance in her jubilant hazel eyes.

The picture was so clear and the colors so vivid. The joy could be felt and love could be seen even though I was only the dreamer. I was in a close up frame watching a birthday celebration for a five year old according to the candles on the cake, but the birthday girl...she was much older indeed with a familiar sense as if I should know her. She was stunningly beautiful and perfect in every way from the strands of her long hair to the white of her manicured nails.

The Giver of the dream panned the camera out so I might capture the view from a further distance. As the picture grew larger, more birthday cakes began to appear, more candles flickered, and more birthday girls but also birthday boys sat in front of their specially prepared cake. The room was massive unlike nothing I had ever seen. There was so much much glory I could hardly take it all in.

I scanned the room and my eye caught hold of Him. He was donned in a purple robe, crowned with gold and diamonds, and breathtakingly beautiful. It was my Jesus! He lifted his arms with definitive gracefulness in an upward motion and delightfully said,

"Happy birthday my children!"

I knew it was heaven and Christ the King was celebrating the anniversary of the day some of his children finally came home. I realized this must happen every day for every day new souls enter His presence.

The camera panned back in for a close up of the first birthday girl in the beginning of the dream. This time the picture focused on the name which appeared on the top of the cake. It said,

"Happy Birthday Mayme!"

I still grieve with a heavy heart some days the loss of my grandmother, Mayme Dominica Bowser, who with no doubt walked through the pearly gates nearly five years ago. Unfortunately, I realize it is for my own selfish reasons that I wish she were still here with me. I realized through the image of the dream I was looking at the anniversary of her death all wrong. I should not mourn, but celebrate the anniversary of her birth to heaven's home!
I love you grandma and can't wait to walk the winding river holding your hand and sit under the tree of life and talk awhile with you!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Tomorrow, Now, and Yesterday

Life simply happens sometimes and we have no control over circumstances, but events which have occurred in the past week or so have left my husband and I scratching our heads and thinking...could it possibly get any worse. I've overheard my husband comment to his sister,

"It can only go up from here."

We've had some sleepless nights. We've been angry. I've cried alot.

I was awakened last night with the words of a song I loved years ago by Amy Grant..."First Love" from her Never Alone album. The words go like this...

You are my first love sweet and gentle as the night
Just being near You now is like a lullaby
All that I have I'd give away to follow You
I can't imagine having life without you
Oh. When all these worldly battles seem to never cease
You simply lift me up and rest me in Your peace
I heard some people say you're only in my mind
I hope that someday You choose to find them.
All other loves will slowly fade like dying flame
Tomorrow, now, and yesterday You're still the same
I wait with longing heart to see You come again
Your sweet and tender love will never end.
I thank my Lord for his brilliance and light amidst the tears! I am grateful that even though my circumstances may change...My Jesus never does! This song was just a reminder to me from Him about what is important and this too shall pass.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Hope Floats

I’ve been pushed in the ocean where the current is fast and I feel like I’m being sucked under. I tread…I tread with all my might to stay above the waves which crash upon me and throw me to and fro. My hands flap frantically back and forth, back and forth just below the surface of the water.

I suddenly remember someone had told me once, when you struggle in the water and feel as though you may drown…just float on your back…conserve your energy….and help will arrive soon. I did. I relaxed my body frame and became buoyant. As my head rested in the water, I looked up. And there He was…my Jesus. He seemed to come from nowhere appearing from the clouds of blue. He said,

“Here I am…just keep your eyes on me. I will not allow you to drown in your struggle. I never leave…I never forsake…those who call me friend and Father for, I AM. I’m greater than any person, any problem, any obstacle which tries to hinder or harm you for, I AM. There are none who have come before me and none which shall come after me who are mightier than I for, I AM. And because I AM and you are my child, you are more than a conqueror in me…Christ Jesus!”

When we take our eyes off of Jesus, we begin to tread water thinking we can save ourselves. But all too soon tiredness sets in and we feel we might drown in the problems life brings. Remember…just float…turn your eyes towards Jesus…and help will arrive soon for our Savior never leaves nor forsakes us in our greatest time of need!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Sandwich Spread of Life

When I stayed at my Grandma and Pap-Pap Romigh’s as a youngster, lunch time was my favorite meal. My Grandmother was a diabetic and had to eat regularly, so lunch was served promptly at noon. We always sat at the table, dishes were set in quaint style, and the Virginia ham and cheese placed on a platter. The freshest white bread was always used, crisp lettuce, and neatly sliced tomatoes. I stacked all the fixings between the slices of bread, but what really made the sandwich delightfully tasty was the sandwich spread which I thought could only be found in Grandma’s fridge. The special mayonnaise spread melded together all the flavors in my mouth and my taste buds would anticipate the next bite with eagerness.

How long has it been in your Christian walk since your heart thirsted for Jesus with eagerness? How long has it been since you open the Bible and spent time in His word? How long has it been since you took the time to pray sincerely with adoration to a Father who longs to hear from you? How long has it been?

Maybe God seems so far away, because you have distanced yourself from Him. He sets the table for you everyday as my Grandparents did for me. He showers us with the smallest details of His glory such as waking up for a new day. He says,

“I’m here.”

Yet you threw the covers off in anguish because morning had arrived too soon and your husband forgot to set the alarm. He tried the giggles of your children as you slumbered to the coffee pot, but you didn’t hear Him. You just grumbled because there was no cream for your java. Then the race began to get the children ready, to get you ready, and then conquer the quest of the day. All the while He kept whispering,

“I’m here… to me… I long for you today…”

You just kept going. He provided a rain the night before which made everything look so green and full of life. He put the lilacs in bloom and made them fragrant for you to smell, but you didn’t even notice His perfume. He sent many smiles your way, but no smile was returned back from you. Then He attempted to get your attention with the beautiful sunset. It was a barrage of majestic colors ranging from deep orange to brilliant purple. This would surely get your attention and remind you of the Savior, even if the day was almost ending. No, you just thought of tomorrow and missed his knock on your door once again. Yes, He set the table for you. He made everything appealing to get your attention, but Jesus wasn’t important. He was at the bottom of your list. You went to bed earlier than expected…….tired…….irritated…… and angry you hadn’t accomplished enough during the day. You couldn’t sleep well. You kept waking up with thoughts racing through your mind about the list you had already prepared for tomorrow.

Let me tell you a little secret. If you’re in the presence of the Lord everyday in prayer, reading His word, in thought, and in deed………it’s the sandwich spread of life. Remember, the sandwich spread made the sandwich with all the fixings just meld together in my mouth as my taste buds anticipated the next bite with eagerness. You already know and believe in Jesus (the sandwich and all the fixings), but being in His presence(the sandwich spread) on a daily basis makes life meld together with a peaceful contentment that can only come from knowing and loving Him.

“Come near to God and He will come near to you.” James 4:8

“Sense”sational Thought for Today...
Take five minutes today and the rest of this week to just sit in quietness. Don’t read the word of God or pray during the five minutes. Just sit and think about Christ. Let God through His Holy Spirit reveal to you His agenda for your day or for your tomorrow. After doing this for a week, increase the time spent in a quiet moment with Jesus. It will change your life and bring peace and contentment.

A Prayer for Today...
Let me walk with you this day my Lord. Help me to see you always…even in the simple things. Please bring to my attention the beautiful gifts you give in the laughter of children and the smile of a friend. Make my heart desire you…thirst for you…long for a quiet moment with you. Amen.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Chains Loosed, Freedom Abounds

My friend was excited yesterday because her mother was coming for a visit. It brought such pleasure to my heart to see the spark of joy in her eyes and the bounce in her voice as she eagerly anticipated a chance to catch up with the one who held her in the womb...her mother. I only stayed a short while and as I traveled back home in the car my mind wondered what it would be like to joyfully anticipate my mom's arrival for a visit.

O how I long for a mothers love. I want to imagine the touch of pure joy upon my face from the stroke of her hand and sweet eyes of adoration that pierce the soul. Despite this deep longing within, I have to find the joy, have peace, and understand what I am to learn from my Heavenly Father in the midst of the pain.

This I know...MY JESUS LOVES ME and I have felt the touch of the Master's hand! He has blessed me with three wonderful gifts in my children. He has entrusted me with their care for they truly belong to Him. My children will know the touch of a mother's love upon their cheek. They have already seen the eyes of mom's adoration piercing their hearts with praise. They know they are loved not just by me and their father, but more importantly by Jesus. The generational chains have been loosed and freedom does abound and the vicious cycle has been broken! Praise be to God!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

A Kiss Before the Womb

As the pastor prayed over the anniversary couple, he requested they be blessed from eternity from which they came until eternity to which they will return. Most people probably heard this spoken the same as I, but maybe none other than myself have pondered this thought since.

Why can’t I remember eternity from which I came or does the Lord give me glimpses and I miss his sweet message of love and adoration? Jesus also came from eternity, has returned, and sits at the right hand of the Father. Did God hold me sweetly in His arms and kiss my forehead before placing me in my mother’s womb? After all, God tells Jeremiah in Jeremiah 1:5,

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,…”

He must have known me as well! He must have known you!

Think me a fool for my thoughts…than a fool I am for the sake of Christ and loving it!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Prayer at the North Window

I have been wrestling with God these past couple of weeks wondering why he has not brought us a buyer for our home in Iowa. We moved to Pennsylvania this summer and bought our current home in July. We have been making double mortgage payments now for seven months and as you can expect, it has taken a toll on our finances.

I am determined even more so to continue in earnest prayer and ask the Lord to send us a buyer. So much so, I have dedicated myself to at least one time per day kneeling or laying prostrate at the north window of my home in prayer over this matter and many other pressing issues concerning family, church, and our country.

Why the north window? I'm not really sure, except to where heaven's home is for this earthly vessel of mine. It is the closest spot in which I look upwards and seek my God. I will wrestle with the Lord my God as Jacob did and I will not quit asking until the Lord returns a blessing unto my family, church, and country.

Will you join me at the north window and wrestle with God for issues of great need in your own life, for your church, and for your country? Why not? You can never go wrong with prayer!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

A Cord of Three Strands

We all seek purposefulness in our lives. This desire for purpose within all of us is fulfilled to some degree by the job we hold or a title we have achieved. But what happens when our assumed purpose has driven us to the likeness of a dog that chases his tail, spinning oneself to dizzy state of unawareness and futility.

It seems unjust when failure strikes because we have worked so hard to produce an outcome of success. However, we must remember, failure is success turned inside out. Babe Ruth struck out many more times than he actually hit home runs, but is known as one of the greatest hitters in the history of baseball. So we must never, never, never quit as Winston Churchill once stated for we never know when or how success will appear had we stuck it out!

Unfortunately, defeat will come with taunts and lies from Satan who tries earnestly to make us believe we can never make a difference in a world which boasts in its evil ways. Fortunately, the victory is alreaday ours through Christ Jesus. So let us keep up the good fight as Paul tells Timothy and lift the chin of our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ with encouragement for one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves, but a cord of three strands is not quickly broken (Ecclesiastes 4:12).