Wednesday, April 16, 2014

When You're Weary

Jesus Christ is my...

"Bridge Over Troubled Water"

When you're weary, feeling small,
When tears are in your eyes, 
I will dry them all;
I'm on your side. 
When times get rough
And friends just can't be found,
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down.
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down.

When you're down and out,
When you're on the street,
When evening falls so hard
I will comfort you.
I'll take your part.
When darkness comes
And pain is all around,
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down.
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down.

Sail on silvergirl,
Sail on by.
Your time has come to shine.
All your dreams are on their way.
See how they shine.
If you need a friend
I'm sailing right behind.
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind.
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind.

(Simon and Garfunkel)

Friday, March 7, 2014

God Speaks

God speaks to us
in ways familiar,
in ways foreign;
He is never silent.

His voice is
the clap of thunder
the screech of hawk
the roar of waterfall;
His voice is
the flutter of wing
the gurgling of brook
the mew of kitten.

He speaks
worlds into being
lightning into striking
winds into blowing;
He speaks
sun into shining
plants into growing
cows into lowing.

His words
are the power
that create life
that summon death
that fill the heart
that sorrow the soul
that give
that take
that every season
wake
that every purpose
make.

God speaks to us.

Man can do naught
but listen
and bow down.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Just Call Me Snow White

I had a "seven dwarfs" kind of day today.

I woke up this morning in a happy mood. My pre-surgery pain was all but gone, and my allergies were in check, so I wasn't too sneezy. I headed out with hubby to see the doc for my second post-op appointment, with a list of about five questions in hand. I wasn't bashful about my concerns, but he made me feel dopey for asking. His responses were curt and vague, and his attitude was demeaning. After spending two hours in travel time, waiting time, and visiting time with no concrete answers to take home, I was irritated and grumpy. It's been a long, tiring day, and I'm sleepy, so I'm heading to bed to comfort myself with a cuddly cat and a good book.

Who knows? Maybe tomorrow morning I'll wake up in a happy mood.


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

One Word 2014

It's been decades since I made New Year's resolutions. I don't know why I stopped -- maybe discouragement, maybe laziness, maybe busyness, or a touch of all three. But two years ago I began a new practice that is more suited to my personality and lifestyle, and that is the choosing of One Word to be a focus for the new year. My One Word for 2014 is healing, for many reasons.

I need healing after spine surgery in December 2013. All went well in the operating room, but recovery has been a challenge. My pre-surgery pain and debilitation is significantly decreased, praise God, but for eight weeks I am in a neck brace and severely limited in what I am physically allowed to do -- no lifting, bending, stooping, pushing, pulling, driving. That means My Hero, who already works a full-time job, has had to take on the responsibilities of vacuuming, laundering, washing dishes, stripping/remaking beds, cleaning the kitty litter, running errands. My heart goes out to him, especially because our standards are different, and I get irritable when things aren't done to my satisfaction. He is slowly learning to sharpen his skills, and I'm slowly learning to relax my expectations, but in the meantime, it's been difficult.

My Hero needs healing for a painful knee. At this point, we don't know what the issue is. He's deferred going to the doctor since he's so busy with work and me and the house. He does plan to seek answers come February, Lord willing.

My elderly parents need healing for a variety of ailments. Our infant granddaughter needs healing from a recent injury. My younger brother needs healing for a host of undiagnosed problems affecting his ability to function normally both physically and emotionally. My older brother and his wife need healing in their relationship with their adult daughter. The list of family members and friends needing healing of some sort does not end here, but I can't possibly name them all.

Our communities, our nation, our world all need healing. Sometimes the rampant brokenness seems overwhelming, irreparable, hopeless. There is so much hatred and hunger and hostility, how can we ever climb out of the miry pit? There is only One who can reach down and rescue us, and that is our compassionate, long-suffering God. He was and is and always will be our Jehovah Rapha, our Healer. It is to Him I turn and through Him I endure and in Him I hope. As Psalm 27:13 declares and as my heart echoes, "I would have despaired had I not believed I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living."

Jehovah Rapha, my Healer, I order my prayers to Thee and eagerly watch.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

What Can I Give Him?

This has always been and will always be my favorite Christmas poem. I first encountered it when I was a young girl, and from that time to the present day, it has nestled only deeper and deeper into the chambers of my spiritual heart.

What Can I Give Him?

What can I give Him,
Poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd,
I would bring a lamb;
If I were a wise man,
I would do my part;
Yet what can I give Him?
Give Him my heart.

(by Christina Rossetti)

Every year at Christmas, we are reminded of the crude and humble manger that held a newborn boy, but not just a newborn boy -- a Messiah, Saviour, Lord, and King. And yet nothing we can offer Him in the way of tangible goods to honor His birth will cause Him to love us more than He already does. So give Him your heart today while you have the opportunity. Tomorrow is promised to no one, and He longs to lavish His love on you and to call you His own. It's His birthday, but His desire is to give *you* a gift...

"For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him would not perish but have everlasting life." (John 3:16)


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Our public library has a Book Nook tucked into a corner on the main floor where they sell gently used books for adults, teens, and children at greatly reduced prices. Today I was able to score ten Christmas books in practically perfect condition for a grand total of $10:

A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens) - large hardcover with full-color illustrations

A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens) - small hardcover

The Night Before Christmas (Clement C. Moore) - large hardcover picture book with full-color illustrations

A Charlie Brown Christmas (Charles Schulz) - large hardcover picture book with full-color illustrations

The Good Little Christmas Tree (Ursula M. Williams) - medium hardcover picture book with full-color illustrations

The Purpose of Christmas (Rick Warren) - small hardcover

Stories Behind the Best-Loved Songs of Christmas - small hardcover

The Donkey's Dream (Barbara H. Berger) - medium softcover picture book with full-color illustrations

A Yuletide Treasury of Poems, Carols, and Songs (edited by S. A. Stuart) - medium softcover

The Life and Times of Santa Claus (L. Frank Baum) - medium softcover with black & white illustrations

My heart is happy!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Nannie's Jumbles

This cookie recipe was handed down by my great-grandmother whom we called Nannie.

Nannie's Jumbles

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups granulated white sugar
1 cup of butter (two sticks), softened
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 eggs
4 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 cup milk (I use 1%)
1 1/2 cups dark raisins (soften first in warm water; drain)

Directions:

Mix together the first five ingredients.
Blend in the flour, baking powder, and milk.
Fold in the raisins.
Drop by generous teaspoonful onto non-stick cookie sheet and sprinkle with sugar.
Bake at 375 degrees F for 12 minutes.

Yield:

About four dozen.


(These cookies are enjoyed best when accompanied by a glass of cold milk.)