Tiny Desires

Before the sun greets the day, Under the gentle pull of the moon, Beneath the bright starry night…Without regret, With forgiven hearts, Upon grace filled souls…We pray to the Lord.

1 Thessalonians 5:17 (NKJV) says to “pray without ceasing”. I have a strong longing to be in constant prayer. It is my earthly connection to God my Father. It is almost like holding His hand. Almost like feeling His presence. I know He is always next to me but when I am in conversation with Him, I feel closest to Him. I know He is with me always but it is more intimate than just knowing He is here. It is hard to explain. My longing wants to be in His presence constantly. I want to see His face. I want to memorize every line, every vein, every wrinkle, every hair. I want to feel the warmth of His hand. I want to hear the tones of His voice. I want to see the colors in His eyes.

Suddenly this desire isn’t so tiny.

 

 

 

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Come Lately

I’ve been watching it rain for several days. I find myself staring out the window watching the birds and not really thinking about anything in particular. I think about a bunch of stuff instead. Stuff that is coming up soon or stuff I don’t have control over. I’m not sure which one is worse.

I’ve been busy getting ready for a festival. Making sure my jewelry is presentable and ready to, hopefully be sold. It started as a hobby for just me. I would buy old jewelry and beads at thrift stores or garage sales and make them into something cool for me to wear. Then as my collection grew, I figured I’d try selling them. I opened an Etsy shop and things are pretty slow. But in the grand scheme of things, it is expected. There are thousands upon thousands of shops there and all over the internet. Finding a way to standout is a huge challenge.

So, If you are curious or looking for something unique, come check us out. You will find us at https://www.etsy.com/shop/TurtleWolfDesigns.

Stay safe and God bless.

Are You Authentic?

It’s hard to be a perfect person. To go to work and not make any mistakes. Process my code or my reports and everything run and prove perfectly. It makes for a perfect day at work.

Or to have time and energy one day, here and there, to clean the house. Not just dust or sweep or vacuum, but to really clean. Move all of the furniture. Wipe down the walls. Pull out the fridge and oven and even clean all of the shelves. It makes for a perfectly clean house.

Or to go through your day with your family when no one says a crossed word or has any issues. Kids clean their rooms with a smile. Parents interact together in pure honest love. All seems right in their little world. It makes for a perfect family.

In our new world of technology authentication codes are used to provide integrity and authentication assurances for our devices and messages. We can feel fairly secure that these codes prevent intruders from reeking havoc in our personal lives.

But what about our personal lives? The perfect work and family scenarios I started with, unfortunately do no exist. The core of our marriages/families should and sometimes do but the world around us often creates enough chaos that perfect harmony cannot exist on a consistent basis.

Part of the problem is our definition of perfect and our perception that we can and should be pursuing it. But is that realistic? Is it attainable?

Not only is it not realistic, it isn’t something we should be beating ourselves over the heads for not achieving. We should strive for perfection, but accept it isn’t possible to achieve. We are human. We have a sin nature. We can be forgiven for our sins but that doesn’t remove the natural desires.

The only way to do that is to constantly give those desires up to God in prayer. We won’t be perfect this side of Heaven. But we can strive to do better than the time before. Lean on Him and He will provide all that we need.

Be Mindful of Your Tongue

I know I was in a bad mood and hurting Saturday night at church but what I heard from people really made me bite my tongue. I wanted to call them out on what I heard them saying. But I listened to God and shut my mouth.

I heard one man telling a story about his daughter and he repeatedly called her his “dumb” daughter. It was rolling off of his tongue like it was normal. When people ask me how my mom is, sometimes depending on who it is, I’ll say she is ornery. She is and will tell you she is but I don’t harp on it or say it more than once. I then follow it up with how she is doing.

I heard a woman talking to another woman about how stupid a cashier was at her store. She went on and on about how she made mistakes several times while she was there. It didn’t matter to her how that cashier’s day was going. It didn’t matter what she was going through that no one could see. It didn’t matter that she is human. But this woman calls herself a Christian, who by definition isn’t perfect.

I saved the worst for last.

The woman behind us was telling the pastor about her nephew, I think. She explained how he had asked a girl to the prom. Then one day they were talking and he said something that made her tell him that she is an atheist. He told her the prom was off. He stood up for Jesus and the family was proud of him. But she went on to say that because he wears his heart on his sleeve and hasn’t dealt very much with death and other life issues that he would make a horrible pastor, which he is aspiring to be. I wanted to tell her “how dare you try to take God’s place”. What in the world! Why would anyone claiming to be a Christian be so narrow-minded and cruel.

I don’t understand people. I don’t understand why He shut me up. Probably because they wouldn’t have listened to me anyway. I’m sure He has a better idea and way to deal with this. Maybe I’m concerned about something I shouldn’t be. Maybe I was being over sensitive. Maybe it isn’t any of my business. Maybe I’m over reacting. Maybe I’m more aware of the things I say and do. Maybe my wanting to please God every minute of every day has tainted my view of people somehow. Could I be seeing too much? Could I be too critical of how people act and what they say? Could I have it wrong?

Letting Him Down

My friend Kim and I will visit for a few hours on a Friday afternoon or two a month just to talk and catch up on each other’s lives. It is our time to vent, rejoice and cry.

During one of our visits I said “I feel like I let God down”. She gave me the strangest look. After a minute or so, she said ” how were you holding Him up? “. Then I got the strange look on my face.

How indeed?! Am I that powerful or better yet, that Good? Then I felt dumb for thinking I could hold God up. As though I have a righteous hand. What was I thinking… lol.

When all was said and done, I came away with a great deal of relief and humility. The pressure was off and I felt my immortality. Feeling completely human and fallible brought me to my knees and a place of vulnerability. I had reentered the Throne Room and fallen on my face before God.

Lost and Found Friends

Oh man, I hate having my own advise thrown back at me. OK, I’ll put on a strong front and jump right in. Well, maybe a few little hops here and there instead. And the armor, well, that doesn’t exist.

Three years ago my world changed. For the better but still a major change. I lost all of my contact information. I was able to get contact information for family of course and most of my friends know my family, so I got theirs too. And there were a few I found with the help of Facebook. Now I am feeling the nudge to reconnect with the lost friends but I fear the “what took you so long” barrage of questions. Mostly because I don’t have an answer.

So maybe one at a time and see how it goes. I had become friends with one of my hospice patients. A very sweet lady who took complete care of her husband right up until he passed away. I would visit her several evenings a week and help her with different things pertaining to her husbands care. For hospice, I was mostly there for moral support but as we became more and more friends, I couldn’t help but help her out.

The day he passed away, I phoned to speak to her. Her daughter-in-law answered the phone. I was told that the family had everything under control and they didn’t need me. I was hurt, of course, but I also understand the dynamics of family and dealing with the death of a loved one. So I backed off and gave it a few weeks.

One day I decided to pay her a visit. We cried and hugged and she asked me where I’ve been. I told her what I was told and she was horrified. She had looked forward to seeing me and my continuing to be her moral support. I was crushed and vowed at that moment to never take the word for anyone from someone else.

So now as I remember how great it was to catch back up with her, I am reminded of the friends I need to contact and I’m not looking forward to their reactions. When the crap hit the proverbial fan three years ago, it was to them, as if I fell off the face of the earth. You see, they were my online co-workers. When that happened and for a few years after that, I didn’t have a computer and I couldn’t find my notebook where I wrote everything down. Only recently while going through a few boxes did I find the notebook. I stare at it everyday knowing the next day won’t magically make it easier. Then I wonder if I should even bother. Maybe it would be better to just let things be.

 

Don’t Placate Me!

I’ve written briefly about my medical issues but lately my doctor is making me a little concerned. Not that she doesn’t know what she is talking about. It is more like she is patting me on the head. I’m not sure what to make of it. I know not every issue has an answer. Some issues are because of age. Some are the nature of the beasts. But that doesn’t make me feel better.

Maybe I’m doing something wrong; no, she would tell me. Maybe I’m not doing something; no, she would tell me that too. Maybe she thinks I am doing something that I’m not doing, that could be it. Maybe I am making a mountain out of a mole hill. Maybe…

Time Flies!

There are a lot of saying about time flying. But it is true. I think we notice it more and more the older we get or the older our children and grandchildren get. Time is a funny thing. It can be your friend or your worst enemy.

I often Skype with my daughter-in-law as she shares times with my new grandson with me. He is growing like a weed…lol. I was fortunate to be in North Carolina when he was born and I miss the time I could have had with him when he was an infant. There is nothing so sweet and calming as holding an infant in your arms.

I hope to see all of my grandchildren this coming Christmas. Even though I know it will be a busy and hard time for me, it will be worth it. My oldest two grandchildren are in high school and the youngest girl is in second grade. She will be nine in February. They all are really growing way too fast. But I have been so blessed to be a part of their lives. They really do amaze me.

This month will fly by as well. I am getting jewelry ready for a festival the first weekend of next month and I’m feeling the pinch. I have moments of creativeness like most people do and sometimes it can go dry for days. That bothers me as though it isn’t normal but I know it is. It affects my writing as well. I’m surrounded by so many things I could be doing that I often find myself sitting and trying to decide what to do next. It sounds silly, but I guess it’s likes filing papers in a folder, so the brain can reorganize.

My writing has slacked off this month and last too. I’ve been studying more, again trying to get some things done, and focusing on family. Which is good I know but it all feels like it needs attention, as if it could ever be finished.

I have often taught on what it means to wait on God. I use to teach 1st and 2nd grade Sunday school. One of the easiest ways to explain God’s timing was to use the comparison between an oven and a microwave. I don’t remember who came up with this but it wasn’t me.

I would ask them questions about watching their mom cook and bake in the oven versus heating something up in the microwave. I remember one little girl told me her favorite snack was cookies. I asked her if her mom baked them in a microwave. She said no because they wouldn’t bake right. I asked her which was more important, that they quickly be ready to eat or that they be great to eat. She said great to eat was best. I asked her if it was worth waiting on the oven and she agreed.

That day they gleaned a small bit of what it means to wait on God. While it is a very difficult thing to do, we know it will be far better than anything we could do ourselves. He does not operate in a microwave. I’m glad it doesn’t.

Stay safe and God bless.

 

Hide and Seek

When I was a little girl, I loved playing hide and seek. Sometimes there were enough of us to include the entire block. Those were challenging hunts. The only rule then was we couldn’t enter any buildings or houses.

Then from a short distance you would start hearing the neighborhood names being yelled by moms calling us home for supper. I miss those simpler times.

My aunt Mary would occasionally babysit for us. My sister is six years younger and a handful. Mary use to love playing Hide and Seek with us until one day I found a spot in the back of a closet behind dad’s boots where I was completely hidden. I could hear her roam from room to room looking for me. I heard her checking the doors to make sure I hadn’t snuck out.

After a while her playful calling of my name started to sound frantic. I came out when I heard her cry. I don’t remember if I got a whipping or not but probably should have. I’ve always had this weird urge to win and when I was young, it didn’t matter who I hurt.

Thankfully, I’m not that person today. I am the opposite. Mostly because I am a child of God and since I know He wins, I do too.

Until I started thinking about this post, I had forgotten that the game of Hide and Seek posses a biblical principle. I often find myself so wrapped up in a moment of “something ” that I have to stop and look around as if God had wondered off from me like a small child. He hasn’t of course, I had and didn’t notice it.

I use to dwell on this mistake but now I realize it is normal and human nature. Phew! I’m OK. That is a relief!

There is safety in numbers, Aunt Mary use to say. What she never understood was that there is safety on base too. God provides that safety no matter where we are or what we are doing. We can stand strong on His “base” knowing He wins.