Where is home anyway?

Yesterday I learned about the passing away of my friend, Lisa Menard. Last month, my Father-in-law, J.P. also died. My youngest child said this evening, “why is this happening all of a sudden?” I told her that it happens all the time, it’s just that now it’s touching people dear to her and she’s old enough to somewhat understand and process the attendant emotions.

Got me thinking…what exactly is it about this finite earth that we hold on to so tightly anyway? I think of the expression: “home is where your heart is.” So where’s my heart?

I can say honestly that since my mother went to heaven, the mystery of death has somehow lost its grip on me. I was not fearful about dying, just…suspicious. It seemed so mysterious; so many questions, not enough answers. Yes, I’ve known for a long time that there’s an eternity beyond this existence and that I’m destined to spend mine with Jesus (yay!), but that space between then and now and the transition process always left me scratching my head. Now, not so much. Not because I suddenly figured it out all, but I stopped trying to. I just really don’t care anymore about the hows and whats. It’s enough that I know where I’m headed, and why.

I think about Mummy… J.P… Lisa… They are finally at rest, healed, complete, perfect. Then I think of their legacy, what they left behind: Mummy – beauty and godliness. J.P. – wisdom and love of family, Lisa – child-like faith and genuine love for others. These among many other qualities. I picture them all the way I think they should be, only better. Makes it hurt a little bit less. Makes me happy in a nostalgic sort of way. Makes me long for “home.”

That’s where my heart is!

Hold me, Jesus!

Don’t feel like talking (or writing) much, but I’ll let this video by Rich Mullins speak for me. It echoes the cry of my heart today.

‘Nuff said…

Sweet Spice (Mary)

Sweet spice

For me, Mary ranks up there with that proverbs 31 woman who sets the bar so high and makes the rest of us women look like spam (the canned variety, that is, not the electronic, although my husband loves spam, so for him it wouldn’t be a bad thing – ugh!).

So why have I included her in the lineup of spice girls? Because as meek and mild as she was, it takes a certain amount of boldness to embrace her calling as the mother of Messiah. Any mother worth her salt will agree that motherhood is not for the fainthearted, but being the mother of Messiah? No wonder some people revere her! Not that I’m advocating that she be worshiped, but that girl deserves some props!

There’s so much I’d like to chat with her about when I finally meet her. For instance, how hard was it to endure the taunts and stigma of being pregnant out of wedlock before anyone, including her fiance Joseph, believed that it was immaculate conception? What kind of love and devotion prompted her to accept the role, knowing it would be an unchartered road fraught with hardships and God knows what else? How did she navigate raising Jesus as a regular kid, knowing He was anything but? And how did she raise her other kids without showing any kind of preference or bias towards Him? I’m sure she must have had her moments, but not once does the Bible recount any incident that cast her in bad light.

Oh yeah – sweet spice, definitely!

Sultry Spice (Bathsheba)

Sultry Spice

Ahhh, Bathsheba! Innocent victim of a bored, roving-eye monarch? I think not!

Somehow, I don’t think this sister was quite as powerless as one might think (her story is in 2 Sam. 11:1). From all accounts, King David was quite the looker and the fact that he was a passionate, powerful ruler couldn’t have hurt one bit. Her poor husband, Uriah, must have been out of his league and probably didn’t even know it. I picture him as this dedicated soldier, utterly committed to king and country, to the detriment of his own home. Bathsheba, resigned to the fact that she would always play second fiddle to Uriah’s patriotism, probably spent much of her time left to her own devices, bored to tears. Tell me she had no idea that her favorite bathing spot on the roof was within view of the palace. Tell me that when David made advances towards her, she could not have turned him down, swearing loyalty to her beloved Uriah. Tell me she could not have refused to connive with David to attempt to deceive Uriah into thinking he was the father of the seed of adultery which was growing within her. Yeah, right!

Bathsheba may not have been overt, but she was certainly conniving and drop-dead gorgeous enough to catch the eye of David who could have had any woman he pleased. Thus, she earns the title of Sultry Spice. Yet, I love that even though there were tragic consequences of her sin choices, she was given a second chance and later became the mother of Solomon, the wisest and richest king of all time. Even more impressive, she was included in Jesus’ lineage. That speaks of the grace of  God. That is a demonstration of the fact that no matter how low we sink, God’s hand can still grab a hold of us as long as we let Him.

Interesting that in Jesus’ genealogy in Matthew 1:6, Bathsheba was not even mentioned by name, but identified as the mother of Solomon and the wife of Uriah. Hmmm… Digest that. Any thoughts on why?

Pardon the Interruption, but He favors me!

I just had to interrupt my musings about the Spice Girls of Jesus’ lineage to share this song with you. A friend of mine pointed it to me (thanks, Wendy) and it spoke to my heart directly. If I were half of the skilled singer/songwriter that Hezekiah Walker is, that’s exactly how I would have written it.

So if, like me, you can look back on your life and say with confidence that the favor of God has followed you at every turn, then sit back, crank up the volume on your computer, soak in every word and let the tears of gratitude flow if they come. Oh, and have some kleenex close by (or use your sleeve like someone I know 😉 ).

…And have a mah-velous weekend!

 

These are exciting times…

Economy woes

I know, I know, it’s been a while since I last blogged – not that anyone noticed, I’m sure. Anyway, I’ve had a good reason (this time!) I started a new job and I’ve been in training and just had my first real day on the job today.

These days, with jobs so few and far between, I am grateful to once again be a part of the endangered species that is the workforce. Being a full-time (8am-5pm with an hour’s lunch) commitment in addition to the work I do as our church’s administrator, and all my other roles, you can understand how precious time is lately! How do we women do it? Only by the grace of God!

Apart from the obvious (ie the moulah), I’m excited about meeting new people and connecting with folks I ordinarily wouldn’t meet. Now more than ever, with the economy in shambles and people losing so much, they need to see that there is hope in hopeless times and God’s people are the ones to show them that hope. The fact that we are hurting right alongside them makes it even more believable. Every time I hear people complain about the economy, I listen for the things they are not actually saying: how their paradigm and priorities have shifted; how they are looking for something more dependable than 401Ks to rely on…the list goes on. Then I wait for the right moment to speak a word “in season.” Hope is not lost! So every time you feel the urge to join in some government bashing and Israelite-style murmuring, remember to look around you for a reminder of how blessed you are, regardless. I’m sure you won’t need to look far.

Call me crazy, but yes, I do think that these ARE exciting times!

He never forgets

They say an elephant never forgets. I’ll have to take their word for it because I personally am not acquainted with any elephants. I do know for a fact, though, that God doesn’t forget. Sometimes we pray for and about stuff that He Himself has laid on our hearts and it seems so long in coming that we give up and forget about it. But God doesn’t forget. I’ll bet you that Abram and Sara, who had wanted kids for so long, after a while gave up praying about it, when it no longer made sense for their physical bodies to produce offspring (note to self: confirm this when you get to heaven). That biological clock was done ticking. Or so they thought. But God didn’t forget.

How many God-given dreams and desires have been abandoned in prayer because it didn’t look like they’d happen after all?  How sweet it is when one day, though it was a long time coming and it looked like it wasn’t meant to be; surprisingly, amazingly, it comes to pass! All because God…Never…Forgets!

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