Thursday, September 26, 2013

True Security

Back to Psalm 16. If you have not read the
previous blogs on this particular chapter,
you might want to go back. This blog makes
more sense in context.

"My flesh dwells secure." (Why?)
"For You will not abandon my soul to sheol,
or let your holy one see corruption."
(Psalm 16:10)

This verse is plainly about Jesus. He went into hell,
but did not stay there. His body was resurrected from
the grave. What strikes me about this verse is that
God has a different perspective from me. I see things
in terms of time; He sees everything from the perspective
of Eternity. We have this promise that, "to be absent from
the body is to be present with the Lord." (II Cor. 5:8)
We also have the promise that our bodies, even after death,
will be resurrected and transformed. We will not stay in
the grave! (Corinthians 15:51,52)
My time here is but a split second in light of eternity.
God will not abandon me to the grave. I have a future
and a hope. Even my flesh dwells secure.

Reader, do you know Him?

A Glory Moment

I opened the blinds in an upstairs window this morning
and my eyes were filled with glory. Plain houses, across
the lake and hidden by the trees, were reflected as
shimmering gold on the lake under a dawn sky. A
Cormorant (A large duck whose name means "Sea Crow"
and who puts his wings out toward the sun to dry) caught
a fish and I watched in wonder as he smacked it on the
water a few times and then swallowed it whole. In the
midst of the drama, I heard a familiar cry, and saw the
resident Kingfisher, fly low. Was God showing off? Was
this all for me? Would He really orchestrate such delight
for an audience of one?

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

To Dwell Safely

I have set the Lord continually before me; 
because he is at my right hand,
I will not be moved.
Therefore, my heart is glad,
and my glory (my inner self) rejoices;
my body too shall rest and confidently
dwell in safety. (Psalm 16:8,9)

Last week there were three attacks in various parts
of the world. The attack on the Naval Yard in
Washington DC;  the attack on the Mall in
Nairobi, Kenya which is still going on as I write
this; the attack on the church in Pakistan where
at least 68 men, women and children were blown
to pieces. Oddly enough, I know people who were
affected by these events in each country. My first
inclination was to skip this verse. But, as I looked
more carefully I realized that these verses are
prophetic. (They are marked this way in my Bible.)
They speak of Jesus. Actually, Jesus is speaking
from the invisible realm before his time on earth.
God dwells outside of time. He is always at the
beginning and the end of time and in all of the
in-betweens. If our Savior can say these words as
He watches Himself suffer and die, then I know that
my life my suffering is not in vain.There is hope for me,
for you, in the midst of chaos, death and uncertainty.
Ponder these verses. What an awesome God we have!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


"I have set the Lord continually before me;
Because He is at my right hand,
I will not be moved." (Psalm 16:8)

How does one set the Lord before him
continually? How did David do this? He
lived before the cross; we live after the cross
and God dwells within us. How many
Christians "pray without ceasing?" Ouch!
That seems impossible in our busy, chaotic
lives. I find that I do better when I focus on
God through His Word in the morning. Then
I take bits of scripture with me. I share my
thoughts with Him throughout the day. He is
always present, even if I am not present to
Him. My thoughts go wild, but if I look up
instead of at the issue, Jesus comes back into
focus. I see this as a choice in the moment and
these moments add up to abiding in the Vine.

What are the results?
"I will not be shaken," when night falls.

And, yes, reader, I am not there yet, but
God knows my heart.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Hearing God

"I will bless the Lord who gives me counsel;
yes, my heart instructs me in the night seasons."
(Psalm 16:7--amp.)

In this verse David acknowledges his source of
wisdom. He knows that whatever wisdom he
has comes from God alone--and, boy, does David
need counsel in the days when everything looks
black! David indicates that God gives instruction,
the next step, the blueprint, through his heart.

How does God speak to you in the night seasons?
Does he write it out on the wall of your room,
speak through storm or fire, through a donkey,
through a verse, or into your heart in a quiet whisper?

I remember a time when I was furious with God.
I very much wanted something concerning my
children and God said, "no." I was physically
stomping around the dining room and complaining
out loud. Then came The Voice: "YOU CHILDREN
ARE MINE; I AM THEIR GOD!" It was loud and
I responded by saying, "You don't have to shout."
But, I really needed to hear the message then, and
continue to need the reminder. It is such a comfort.

God is always, how do I miss Him?

Thursday, September 19, 2013

A Beautiful Inheritance

"The Lord is my chosen portion and my
     cup. (David changes tenses)
You hold my lot.
The lines have fallen for me in pleasant
Indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance."
(Psalm 16:5,6)

David chooses God as his portion as opposed
to those who choose another God. Then he
says, "You hold my lot, my times, my going
and my coming. It is all good."

I wonder if David wrote those words on a day like
today. The air is crisp with the promise of fall, the
sun is warm; nothing moves except the birds
munching at the feeder. It is a respite from "the
before" and "the next," an in between moment.
As we face a "what next," this verse is particularly
personal. He has held our every decision in the
past and as I look back I see the goodness of the
Lord in every change. Indeed, I have a beautiful
inheritance! God holds my lot and my future.

Reader, this psalm is pithy with plenty of flavor
in every verse. This verse sticks with me like
a bowl of hot oatmeal on a cold morning!


Wednesday, September 18, 2013


In verse four of Psalm 16 David says:

"The sorrows of those who run after another 
     god shall multiply;
their drink offerings of blood I will not
     pour out
or take their names on my lips."

I first fell in love with this psalm in college,
but I did not know what to do with the fourth
verse. I read the meaning as not having anything
to do with those who worshiped a false god--
not even to speak their names. Not so! David
is contrasting his beloved friends, who bring
him delight, to those whose lives multiply sorrow
through the worship of other gods. David will
not enter into that worship or even mention the
names of these gods. Big difference!

He sees that the end for those who do not choose
the Living God, is sorrow. How sad.


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Excellent Ones

"As for the Saints in the land,
they are the excellent ones,
in whom is all my delight."  
(Psalm 16:3)

David is sitting before the Lord recounting the
events and the years leading up to his becoming
king. One person after another comes to mind.
You see, David never fought a battle alone. There
were at least 600 men of all stripes who came to help
him; men of great courage who did mighty deeds.
(See "David's mighty men" in 1Chronicles 11:10-47)
These men worshiped the God of Abraham, Isaac,
and Jacob. These were David's companions. These
were David's friends.

I sit before the Lord as woman after woman comes
to mind. How they have graced my life. "These are 
the excellent ones in whom is all my delight!" My
girl friends. Gifts every one. Joy bubbles up!


Monday, September 16, 2013

Preserve Me!

According to the Chronological Bible, David penned
Psalm 16 in the years prior to his becoming King over
all of Israel. He wrote it during a period of great instability
and bloodshed. We are living in a time of flux and suddenlys.
In the past few days lives have been shattered in the flash 
floods along the mountains of Colorado. Even as I wrote
these words this morning, a shooter at the Navy Yard in DC
sent four men into Eternity. Who knew?

Sometimes scripture is the only way to communicate with
our Lord, and so I pray Davids words out of Ps 16:1,2:

"Preserve me, O God--
     keep me as the apple of your eye
     Hide me in the shadow of your wings. (Ps 17:8)
For I take refuge in You--
     You are my Lord in these times of uncertainty--
I have no good apart from You"--no where to turn.


Thursday, September 12, 2013

Memories of Another Trip

Our recent trip took us along the top side of Western MD, into
West Virginia, and then into Pennsylvania before dumping us
into Ohio. Traveling through the Allegheny Mountains brought
up memories from my childhood. We grew up outside of
Philadelphia and each summer we traveled to Chautauqua,
located just over the Pennsylvania border in the far west corner
of New York State. Chautauqua was a place outside of time
tucked next to a beautiful lake, full of stately houses from the turn
of the century. Each July, my dad would pack the car, his wife, the
three kids, the dog into the car and we would head into mountains
that would lead us to sounds, smells, falling rain, that simply did
not exist anywhere else, not like Chautauqua! (The rain always fell
hard and straight down.) We drove with open windows, hair blowing,
on winding mountain roads where we would hold our collective
breath every time we passed a truck, then the collective sigh with
each success. I can remember the light slanting through trees, and
the smells of the forest. I also remember our lunch break where we
ate the best hamburgers in the world and supped on the nectar of a
vanilla shake. Did we eat inside? I don't think so. Did we fight or
fidget in that narrow back seat? Maybe. As the afternoon waned,
Dad would tell us it was time to look for the lake. The road continued
to take us up and down and with every crest of the hill we watched
with eager anticipation for a glimpse of  bright blue sparkling water.
It was always sunny, wasn't it?

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Creation Museum

The Museum opened in 1994 and was in my bucket list of
things I wanted to do. It was put together by Ken Ham who
is the founder of Answers in Genesis which focuses on a
young earth of 6,000 years or so. Since most believe in
evolution of some sort and a time frame of some 4.9 billion
years, I was curious as to what I would find there. It was a
wonderful two days of poking into the past. The first thing we
noticed, besides the dragon that greeted us, was both the
cleanliness of the museum, and the friendly helpful staff. The
second thing that impressed me was how they had utilized
technology in the way they presented the exhibits, and the
special shows such as in the Planetarium. It was first rate. I was
not prepared for the beauty of the lake and Botanical Gardens.
They were stunning. The museum had a petting zoo of some
pretty interesting animals: two camels, a couple of llamas, a
wallaby, a zorse (cross between a zebra and a horse), a
zedonk (cross between a zebra and a donkey), and then the
typical sheep and goats.

In addition to the 2-3 hour tour of the museum itself, they
had live speakers each noon and a concert for families at 3PM.
We heard two speakers, both qualified in their subjects. The
first speaker, a Ph.D biologist, talked about the genetics of
Adam. It was a packed hour.

I came away with the following:

If there was no real first Adam, which many in evangelical
circles are teaching today, then, how can we have a second
Adam? (ICor. 15:21,22)

If there was a time when "God saw that it was good," then how
can you have death, fossils, destruction, sin in the billions of
years before Adam and the Garden?

If the first 11 chapters of Genesis are not true--remember, God
was the only one present during creation--then how can we
trust that the rest of the Bible is true?

It is estimated that 70% of churched children will leave the faith
after graduating from high school. Secular Humanism is teaching
them that they are descended from animals; the church is hedging
about whether or not the book of Genesis and a six day creation
can possibly be true. There is tremendous pressure on our children
to believe in evolution, and it leaves them without meaning or

Did I hit a sore spot for some of you? The Bible is the foundation
of our faith and Genesis sits at the very bottom. If the foundation
is rotting then the building will eventually collapse. ( Ps. 11:3)
Answers in Genesis has some incredible material. Check it out!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

More Irritations

Even before our Anniversary I had been looking at
what it means to give thanks and I had not gone
into our trip with high expectations--which, as it
turns out--was a great place to be! Added to yesterday's

Exhaustion after only three hours of travel
An e-mail clash with a good friend that left both of
     us with shards of glass in our hearts.

Irritations at our motel in Indiana such as:
A cracked coffee pot--heavens--
A plugged toilet,
A dripping noise in the bathroom ceiling,
The smell of cigarette smoke drifting into our room.
Running children throughout breakfast the second morning,
A crazy hostess who ran a vacuum the last morning.

A song echoes from my childhood:

"In everything give thanks,
For this is the will of God
In Christ Jesus concerning you."

"Lord, in everything????

Monday, September 9, 2013

Our Crazy Trip!

The first of September found us hitting the road on our
way to Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky? Now which was it?
Always check a map and distance BEFORE setting out.
I thought we were going to Columbus, but Glen got an
e-mail saying that we were booked into a hotel in Indiana!
Our destination was The Creation Museum in Kentucky.
Our plan was to leave on Monday, tour the museum on
Tuesday and Wednesday and then head back home on
Thursday so Glen could finish a huge project due that week.
Our anniversary was on Thursday the 5th. By now, are you
totally confused? Instead of a six to seven hour trip, we were
looking at a nine to ten hour trip so we decided to leave on
Sunday and make Thursday a long day.

Sunday we drove three and half hours and then checked
into the lodge at Wisp mountain located in Deep Creek, MD,
where we had celebrated our anniversary back in the nineties.
There was a delicious restaurant waiting for us, whose name
we had forgotten. (The whole landscape had changed since the
nineties.) We looked and found what we thought was the right
place, but certain things did not add up. The door was on the front
side, up two flights of stairs, and the menu seemed odd, but we
were very hungry having missed lunch. When we left, after
not so good food, we walked around the next building, and
there it was!

The trip the following day ended up being more like eight
hours instead of five. It turns out that Lawrenceburg, IN was
only eight minutes from our destination in Kentucky and we
used the beltway around Cincinnati to get there! So, we had
landed where three states touch.

I hate to leave you hanging, but today's blog is long enough
and there is so much to tell!

Check the stories:

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Choice

In the second chapter of 2nd Samuel, David is
anointed King; civil war breaks out, good men
are murdered. During these events David
continues to write:

"I will give thanks to the Lord with all 
     my heart
I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.
I will be glad and exult in thee,
I will sing praise to your name,
     O Most High."
(Psalm 9:1,2)

David might not be there yet in terms of his
emotions, but he makes a choice.
He worships.

Great new story on brokenness:

Monday, September 2, 2013


 King Saul and his son Jonathan are slain on
mount Gilboa. David's best friend is dead.
David's heart is broken. He moans:

"How the mighty have fallen," not once but
three times in eight verses, 2 Samuel 19-27.

We catch a glimpse of his grief in Psalm 6:

"I am weary of my sighing,
Every night I make my bed swim.
I dissolve my couch with my tears.
My eye has wasted away with grief..."
(Psalm 6:6,7)

I cannot leave David. Every page of his life
is awash in tears, or fear, or failure. He is no
different from me. He bears the mark of God.

Please go to the story page and read about
Beautiful Brokenness: