Friday, August 29, 2014

Into Darkness

Drum Roll!

Since, therefore, the children share in flesh
and blood, he himself likewise partook of
the same things...(Hebrews 2:14)

God stepped out of light and into darkness--
and became one with us. He identified with
my humanness--hunger, sleeplessness, pain,
thirst, hard beds and difficult people.

Reader, Image is everything, is it not? I
try to hide my flaws under make up and
hair color. But God in Christ takes it on.
He is the most real, authentic, transparent
One ever. But do we not measure Him
by the Christians we know?

Oh, my Jesus, have mercy...

Thankfulness corner:
Strips of golden light caress bales of bundled hay

Thursday, August 28, 2014


A friend attempted to post a comment but was
unsuccessful. She sees a disconnect between our
glorious Lord and the slaughter of the innocents
overseas. Well, here we are in Hebrews and
bang up against the issues of suffering and death.

Continuing from yesterday's verse:

'For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom
all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory,
should make the founder of their salvation perfect
through suffering.'

Can you think of one god out there that takes
into himself suffering, our suffering. I cannot.
I wonder if the phrase, 'made perfect through
suffering,' has to do with his identification of
us, for in the next verse the writer says, 'that
is why he is not ashamed to call them brothers.'

Dearest suffering reader, your God entered into
the suffering of being human. He is not aloof
from the intense pain of the wanton slaughter
experienced by people just like you. Take heart.
Lift your eyes toward your Lord.

Beautiful Beyond Description

Wednesday, August 27, 2014


Hebrews gives me spiritual heartburn! It is a heavy
meal from the first few verses. The first chapter
contrasts the Son of God with created angels. It is
no contest. Jesus wins hands down.
God puts everything under the control of His Son,
but we can't see it yet. I look around and see chaos
and disintegration at every level. Where is God in
all of this? Ah...

'But we see him who for a little while was made
lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned 
with glory and honor because of suffering death,
so that by the grace of God he might taste death
for everyone.' (Hebrews 2:9)

We see Jesus, not crowned with thorns, but crowned
with glory and honor. But, He first had to walk the
way of the cross and taste death for me, for you. I
love this verse. It moves me to the core. Death seems
to reign in this moment, but it controls nothing.

Dear reader, put down the newspaper, turn off the
TV and gaze upon your Lord.

'Turn your eyes upon Jesus
Look full in his wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.'
( I sang this chorus as a young teen while at camp.
It was the life theme of the director. Have any of
you sung it?)

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

He Wraps Himself in Light

Who is this Jesus that I worship? The disciples
were continually amazed by Him. We read in
Matthew 17 that Jesus took some disciples up
to a mountain and was transfigured before them
so that "his face shone like the sun." A voice
spoke to them out of a glory cloud and they fell
in a terrified heap. John had a vision of His Lord,
resurrected and glorified, and he fell on his face
as one dead.

We each have a picture of Jesus that we carry
around in our heads.
But, is it anything like the real deal?

"He (Jesus) is the radiance of the glory of God
and the exact imprint of his nature,
and he upholds the universe by the word of his
power." (Hebrews 1:3)

Well, I just want to fall on my face and worship
I am speechless. I have nothing more to say.
At least not today, not now.

He Wraps Himself in Light:

Monday, August 25, 2014

The Sturggle

I sit here and struggle. I have looked at David and
his God, Job and his God, but how do I focus on
the Son and his God? How do I comprehend His
greatness and then, dear reader, how do I use
words to draw you in? I don't want to entertain
you, but move your focus from yourself to
Someone so great He defies understanding.

The farmer is bailing hay today. He uses a tractor
to draw the loose hay into a baler that forms large
bails of hay to be picked up by another machine
later. But, God grew that hay quietly using water
and sunshine. Last evening the setting sun flooded
this field with a light that took my breath away!

We who have grown up with Christian concepts
and Bible verses can look at the most outrageous
statements and think, 'Oh, I've read this before.'
Yes, but each word of scripture runs deep. When
is the lat time you went for a swim?

Thankfulness Corner:
Sky and land colored by the setting sun. 

Friday, August 22, 2014

A Day of Wonder

Yesterday we took a day trip through the
mountainous terrain of Idaho and Oregon.
Winding back roads led us through valleys
beside rivers and up over mountains, hills
of sandy brown; each turn a new vista-- the
handiwork of our Creator. We followed the
Oregon Trail and thought of the plodding
pioneers who covered five or ten miles in
a day. They had time to absorb the beauty. 
Our conversation ran like this:

"Look at that!"
"Oh, its gone."

It was a day of wonder landscaped by our
God of Wonder.

"For by Him all things were created in 
heaven and on earth, visible and invisible. 
He upholds all things by the word of His 

Reader, this is your Lord!

God of Wonder

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The Incomparable Jesus

"He is the image of the invisible God the first
born of all creation." (Colossians 1:16)

Jesus, born of a woman, is the image of God the
Father, whom no man has seen. Jesus said to
Phillip, "Whoever has seen me has seen the 
Father." Outrageous!!!! This Jesus and no other is
our Lord. These declarations are the cornerstone
of our faith, a stumbling block to the world. Many
talk about God, but Christianity, and only
Christianity has met the invisible God in the Son.

Reader, what we need more than anything else
is a far greater revelation of our Jesus!

There is None Like You!

Thankfulness Corner:
chirping crickets at night

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


The Centrality of Jesus Christ by T Austin-Sparks,
a British Theologian in the early 20th century, is
the size of a dictionary! I am blown away by his 
comprehension of the Christ who dwells in every 

One quote: "...the need of the Lord's people is to 
have a new apprehension of the greatness of their
Christ, a new appreciation of the Son of God's
love--what a mighty, majestic, glorious, wonderful
Son He is!"

No, I am not going to bore you by quoting a 
man, but I do want to focus on the Perfect Man
who took on flesh and became like us in every

Dear reader, open a newspaper, watch the news,
do we not need a far greater revelation of Jesus
than ever before? Come with me to see, "Him 
who for a little while was made lower than the 
angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and
honor because of the suffering of death, so that
by the grace of God, He might taste death for
everyone." (Hebrews 2:9)

Thankfulness Corner:
Long, fat stems topped with large Sunflowers

Monday, August 18, 2014

What Now?

Well, we finished Psalm 23. Really? I don't think
it is possible to completely unpack a verse of
scripture for eternity is too short to plumb the
depths of God. This weekend I have been
asking God, "What now? Where do You want
me to go with the blog?"

You must know, reader, that this blog is a
tremendous blessing in my life as I discover
hidden treasure. And, you are not just a
hidden number, you are a name and a face.
I write to: Sarah, Audrey, Chris, Linda, Lori,
Yo, Sandi, Corene, Marilyn, Eila, Leslie,
Arlene, April, Dee... Names keep floating
through my mind...My desire is that you be
refreshed and encouraged. May your roots
ever go deeper into Jesus.

Thankfulness Corner:
Pink mountains outlined in purple at dawn.

Friday, August 15, 2014

To Loiter, Linger, Dally

"...and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever."

I love that word "dwell" which means, to loiter, linger,
abide, dally, to continue long in a place.

For me it has the sense of coming home, of being at
home in a place that fits me completely. In my
imagination I see myself walk into the house of my
dreams. I kick off my shoes, lean back, sip a refreshing
cool something as I gaze through the clear side of the
room at the towering snow capped peaks in the distance.
A lion is taking a drink from the flowing stream as two
lambs frolic on grass that never needs mowing. My
grandchildren are busy climbing a very large tree.

Jesus says, "In my house are many mansions. If it
were not so would I have told you that I go to 
prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare
a place for you, I will come again and will take you
to myself, that where I am you will be also.
(John 14)

Oh, dear reader, take some time out of your busy
day to ponder the words of Jesus. Let your imagination
soar. "Eye has not seen, ear has not heard...what God
has prepared for those who love Him." May Joy fill
you today!


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Surely, Without Doubt

"Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all
the days of my life..."

Or, only goodness and steadfast love shall 
follow me all the days of my life.

It takes a lot of living, maybe even old age :-)
to really believe this! David says there is
nothing that has happened to him that is 
outside of God's goodness and his love. I 
can only get a handle on this by getting an
eternal perspective on life. 

The biggest question we can ask:
"Is God a good God?" Well, is He?

Thankfulness Corner:
Mosquitos, swarms of them in the evening 

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

God Shows Off

I have always thought that Psalm 23 was about me!
It has been over the summer that I have really been
aware that God is showing off. (I have been in this
psalm since May!)

He is my Shepherd and this results in, "I shall not
want." Why shall I not want?. Because:
He makes me lie down and feed on His Word.
He leads me beside life giving water
He restores my soul
He leads me in paths of righteousness
This path takes me into deep dark valleys
He is with me
He protects me against enemies when I am helpless
He rescues me when I get stuck
He prepares a banquet in the midst of my enemies.
He anoints my head with oil.

He is faithful and true even when I am not! He
initiates and I respond. He is always the Giver.
He is the Lover. It will always be so.

Thankfulness Corner:
Rain! Beautiful rain!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

My Cup Overflows

As you go back and read Psalm 23, notice that
it was written in the midst of life. Stuff keeps
happening to David throughout his life, yet,
God reveals Himself to David as Life in the
midst of death. He knew the Shepherd who
would "never leave him or forsake him." This
is why David could write, "my cup overflows."
An overflowing cup is not dependent on good
things happening. It is possible to experience
an overflowing cup in the midst of the worst

Dear Reader, has this been your experience?
Have you even thought it possible? Ah, that's
the rub.

God, give us eyes to see your abundance in
hard times.

Thankfulness Corner:
A quiet late summer day

Monday, August 11, 2014

An Oily Post

"Thou anointest my head with oil."

Anointing oil contains:
Liquid Myrrh
Aromatic Cane
Olive Oil
(Ex 30:22)

This fragrant oil was to be used only in a very
particular way--but not as a perfume!

As we look back, again, at Psalm 23, we find
that David is currently experiencing the valley
of the shadow of death. He is beat, the enemy
has not yet been defeated, but God sets a table
of refreshment while anointing David's head
with oil--fragrant oil.

Reader, God comes in the midst of the trial to
bless you and let you know that you are not
alone, ever. He is your provision in the valley.
Recognize it, receive it, rejoice!

Thankfulness Corner:
A phone call from a dear friend

Friday, August 8, 2014

The Table

'You prepare a table before me in the presence of
my enemies.'

The table is set, the dishes laid out, fork in hand,
the guest sits. Behind stands the Deceiver. "Do
you know where the food comes from? Doesn't
look that appetizing, does it? A little on the thin
side perhaps? Not quite what you are used to?
I've got a few side dishes to add and your favorite

But what is on this table? Provision, renewal,
sustenance, revival, purpose, direction, love,
laughter, peace, contentment...God provides;
I receive.

This table reminds me of many tables spoken of
in scripture. One story stands out. Elijah had taken
on the enemies of God and defeated them. A
woman threatens his life and Elijah runs until
he can run no more. He is more than tired. He
no longer wants to live. An Angel comes and
gives him bread and water. He sleeps.

'And the angel of the Lord came a second time and 
said, "Arise and eat for the journey is too great for
you." And he arose and ate and drank, and Elijah
went in the strength of that food forty days and 
forty nights.'

The table is set;
Jesus is Living Bread.
He is Living Water.

Reader, eat, drink and go in the strength of that meal!

Thankfulness Corner:
The setting sun is just above the mountain as we drive west.

Thursday, August 7, 2014


This is for someone out there in blogland:

'In Christ Jesus we work no longer for life but
from life. The summons of the gospel is to
behold what is accomplished for us in Christ
and to live in it. '

This pithy statement blessed me so much
yesterday. I stopped working for God
several years ago and my Christian life has
never been the same!

Thankfulness corner:
Peach Juice dripping off my chin

Wednesday, August 6, 2014


When life falls in, where do I go for comfort? Food,
internet, shopping, games, books... Well, in the end,
it leads to more anxiety.

As I pondered the verse from yesterday--"Thy 
rod and thy staff they comfort me," it led me to
the third person of the Trinity and to the fourteenth
chapter of John. Funny how the Old Testament
spills over into the New!

Just before Jesus dies He and his disciples have
dinner together, but fear has crept in. They know
that something big is coming and they are terrified.
Jesus comforts them as He uses both the rod and
the staff. The rod is the truth: "I am going away, 
you won't see me anymore." He follows this
statement with the staff of promise: "I will pray 
the Father, and he shall give you another 
Comforter, that He may abide with you forever."

The valleys in our lives are places of truth and
Jesus says that "If we know the truth, the truth 
will set us free." Every valley is also enclosed
by hope, the promise of God.

David fears no evil because God is with him,
and God knows how to use both truth and
promise to bring comfort.

Amazing God!

(I have never seen this before! I love it when
God gives me new insights as I mull on a verse.)

Thankfulness Corner:
The wall of eight foot corn around the house.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Spare the Rod!

You have heard the saying, "spare the rod and spoil
the child" but in Psalm 23 we read:

"I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me;
Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me."

Our little group has been discussing this psalm and
last week we looked at the rod and the staff in
Strong's Concordance. The group was split over
whether the rod was for correction or for the killing
of a beast, the kind you meet in a dark valley.

Rod: Stick for fighting, Correction
Staff: Support, Sustenance
Comfort: To strengthen, invigorate, to cheer
enliven, to console, assist , encourage, to
ease and quiet. To give hope. 

The phrase above is so terribly important. David
claims he fears no evil, he is not afraid, because
God is with him, that God's rod and staff bring
comfort. How, in what way?

Anyone have any thoughts on this?

Thankfulness Corner:
Sparkling jewels coming off early morning grass

Monday, August 4, 2014


Shadows seem to bump the light. I love to watch
the leaves blow in the wind on a sunny day. The
parts in shadow outline the leaves in sunlight. But,
there is no contrast in God.

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from
above, coming down from the Father of Lights
with whom there is no variableness or shadow
of turning." (James 1:17)

There is not the slightest variation or the
slightest shadow in our God. He cannot give
to us anything sullied or warped. Every good
gift flows from our heavenly Father; He can
give nothing less.

Thankfulness Corner:
His great faithfulness!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Night Falls

So many are walking through very deep dark valleys
right now. Things happen that don't make any sense.
The world gets darker as values change, war rages
in various places, Ebola terrifies. Things that used to
be right side up are now up side down and in side out.
Old ways of getting life no longer work. Night falls.
Where can I turn? Well, how about the Shepherd?

"I am the light of the world. He who follows Me
shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light
of life. (John 8:12)

Jesus is the light and that light shines out of me, is
seen by others in the valley even when I cannot
see by that light. However, I see the lights of those
who have gone before, and the light coming from
those who walk with me. This Light is in me, this
Light is with me. He will never leave me nor forsake 
me--no matter what!

Thankfulness Corner:
The first Sunflower is dressed in bright yellow.