The Crumb-nundrum

Sometimes we wonder, “What did I do to deserve this?”
A daughter is telling her Mother how everything is going wrong, she’s failing algebra, her boyfriend broke up with her and her best friend is moving away.
Meanwhile, her Mother is baking a cake and asks her daughter if she would like a snack, and the daughter says, “Absolutely Mom,I love your cake.”
“Here, have some cooking oil,” her Mother offers.
“Yuck” says her daughter.
“How about a couple raw eggs?”
“Gross, Mom!”
“Would you like some flour then? Or maybe baking soda?”
“Mom, those are all yucky!”
To which the mother replies,“Yes, all those things seem bad all by themselves. But when they are put together in the right way, they make a wonderfully delicious cake!
God works the same way. Many times we wonder why He would let us go through such bad and difficult times. But God knows that when He puts these things all in His order, they always work for good! We just have to trust Him and, eventually, they will all make something wonderful!

Sometimes we wonder, “What did I do to deserve this?” 
A daughter is telling her Mother how everything is going wrong, she’s failing algebra, her boyfriend broke up with her and her best friend is moving away.
Meanwhile, her Mother is baking a cake and asks her daughter if she would like a snack, and the daughter says, “Absolutely Mom,I love your cake.”
“Here, have some cooking oil,” her Mother offers.
“Yuck” says her daughter.
“How about a couple raw eggs?”
“Gross, Mom!”
“Would you like some flour then? Or maybe baking soda?”
“Mom, those are all yucky!”
To which the mother replies,“Yes, all those things seem bad all by themselves. But when they are put together in the right way, they make a wonderfully delicious cake!
God works the same way. Many times we wonder why He would let us go through such bad and difficult times. But God knows that when He puts these things all in His order, they always work for good! We just have to trust Him and, eventually, they will all make something wonderful!

What’s God teaching you?

Most of us have seen this but it’s such a great analogy, something that captured my attention this morning because I believe it’s what The Holy Spirit is teaching me. We can all relate to it if we’ll think on it for more than a second.

Notwithstanding the fact it rains on the just and the unjust; that God told us truthfully in this world you WILL have trouble, that our own Savior learned obedience by what HE suffered.  More than that, we reap what we sow and sometimes our decisions put us in horrible places and take us through terrible hardship that God NEVER intended (can we stop blame shifting already and take responsibility for ourselves) and then of course, those of us outside others’ decisions have to see and watch and even walk through it too, to some degree. Boy, that can seem terribly unfair, can’t it?

Notwithstanding all that, we often pray, as we should, and ask God to make us more like Him, to work all His awesome principles into our lives and character. But let’s just be honest, whether borne out of ignorance or faulty teaching, what we’re really wanting is for Him to simply do it for us. Poof!  No difficulty please and thank you; no fuss, no muss, no struggle, no suffering, and God forbid, no effort!

Instead, God honors that (right) petition and desire to be holy & righteous just as He is, and allows the adverse circumstance that brings the OPPORTUNITY to fulfill His promise or develop that character trait— and many times we’re absolutely befuddled. We fold like a house of cards and spiral out of control.

I believe He’s taught me why.

We tie His hands.  We don’t prove His Word- it doesn’t even occur.  We haven’t trained ourselves to see the opportunity in the adversity and, if anything, we glorify the adverse by talking it to death!  We wallow in the struggle, point to the enemy, talk about the devil and how he’s working and fighting and blah blah blah. The faith we say we have in God is nowhere to be seen and if it’s a difficult enough situation, sometimes we even start questioning God’s love for us, His blessing, protection, provision, even His goodness.  Our salvation?!

Wow.. how that must frustrate Grace; hurt the heart of our Lord, grieve the Holy Spirit.. Our focus and response in those moments really speaks volumes, doesn’t it?

The Lord’s expectation is that we will focus on Him– filter that situation through His Word and bring HIS WORD to bear against that situation.  Because we know He put His power on His Word for just that purpose and granted us the right, the authority to wield His Word in Jesus’ name.  Because we KNOW to Whom we’ve committed ourselves.  KNOW He loves us and love Him in return.  Trust His honor and believe His promises. Because we take Him at His Word.  Right?

Physical, mental, emotional, relational, spiritual… what part of us or our lives is outside the power of the blood of Jesus Christ?  {Isaiah 53}

Dear God, if the as yet unsaved, unChurched,or newly redeemed look at the messy, undesirable, unpalatable bits and pieces of our lives, let them ultimately see cake! Considering You are willing to walk through this process with us for as long as it takes until we resemble You in every way- stable and fixed, rooted and grounded- let us be willing to pay the price, to persevere through trial and, if need be, error. You’re a good God- a great Father! You’ve only ever given Your best to Your children, beginning with Your Son. Thank You so much for Your patience, Your faithfulness, Your steadfast love and loyalty. Bless us to trust Your unconditional love, to give our all to You and for You: it’s what You gave to us. To be at peace with You, ourselves and the process of salvation. Bless us to KNOW that at the end of all things, we get to have our Cake and eat it too! In Jesus’ all-powerful name. Amen and so be it.

Lost & Found

I wanna lose myself in love

that can’t be measured

plumb its depths

find its treasure

I wanna sink in the River

soak in the Brine

see the unseen

reverse the mind

I wanna dance on shores

walk the sea

sealed. bound

ultimately free

I wanna give out of lack

spend every dime

reap absurd wealth

wasted to time

I wanna walk out the line

make straight the path

washing feet

subduing wrath

I wanna soar like an eagle

speak to mountains

stroll through gardens

revel at His Fountain

I wanna drink the Water

taste the Wine

stand in the Midst

feel the Son shine

I wanna understand wisdom

freely give

kill my self 

learn to live!

I wanna cling and run

never look back

inhale Light

expel the black

I wanna bow the head

bend the knee

speak the courage

free to be

I wanna lose my self  in Love

scope without human measure

plumb His infinite depths

reap its priceless treasure

justAvoice4Him© Jan 2015

Free_Bonds_Broken

overzealous

sheila sea

this is the last of it,
the horizon
barely discernible
through the fume.
I have been relentless
but the echo has grown loud
refusing to be ignored.
I burned
the hallowed ground
we built.
trampled over the bush.
I am overzealous.
flawed so
gifted so
I’ve whittled down the pace
in the hopes-
in the fruitless hopes..
it is with them I hang
smirking still
through vexed withdrawal.
sly still
in silken flowing shawls.
it’s true,
I’ve caught on now.
we are the river
in the wind
and the breeze
is all but gone.

– Sheila Sea

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Hope Changes Everything

This past Monday morning, devotional time became prayerful intercession that centered on hope, on the resurrection of it for those of us who have allowed it to dry up and all but disappear.

“Sometimes hope is all you need,” I heard the Lord say once.

But if You can do anything, take pity on us and help us!” And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’! All things are possible for one who believes.”​ Mark 9:22-23

Discouragement is a poisonous sponge.  Time can often seem to prophesy against us- the silence becomes deafening, the weight more than can be borne; the wait, like an eternity or even indifference from God.  This is when the Word has to be hidden in the heart- when we must lay a foundation for our faith and see beyond crumbling walls of fear, suffering, lack and disillusionment.  When submission & surrender become more than super-spiritual dialogue, when God’s Truth trumps reality and His promises douse the doubts and Peace takes His rightful place on the throne of our hearts.


Continue reading Hope Changes Everything

Trees as Weeds

some eyes would see trees as weeds
bothersome rather than beautiful

Perspective. “As a man thinks in his heart, so he is.” Prov. 23:7

Poesy plus Polemics

"Ugly Trees 2" Painting by Diane Kosco From paintingsilove.com “Ugly Trees 2”
Painting by Diane Kosco
From paintingsilove.com

some eyes would see trees as weeds
bothersome rather than beautiful
lost to an indifferent lexicon
these the disconnected
disaffected souls drifting
through life feeling
little to nothing of why they are here
how their place in the scheme
corresponds to a purpose
deliberate not predetermined
no story of destiny
rather a tale of design
willful choice to engage with the vibrant
invigorant features of nature
to join the esthetic community
drawn into compact with all living things
shared of that quickening spark
what man loves or demeans in himself
he will love or demean
in his fellow creations
such is the power possessed in each heart
absolute in its truth
that will render this world
filled with trees or with weeds

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