"I am guiding you in the way of wisdom, and I am leading you on the right path." proverbs 4:11

a facelift??

Written by:admin
Published on December 16th, 2013 @ 11:54:00 am , using 371 words, 736 views
Posted in Announcements, about

well i was trying to post yesterday.  first the computer crashed.  upon reboot i praised the auto save feature on MS Word and moved the text (again) over to this space and worked and worked on the formatting and decided to add one more picture and when i returned to the saved post with the new picture the whole thing had dissappeared.  as i'm muttering in frustration on how i have to start over again and take out all the extra spaces that this blog software defalts to and maybe i shouldn't be so picky about spaces but shell silverstien cared about the spaces and for some reason it matters to me and how do i know now if this is a really good post that the enemy wants to block or a really bad post that the Lord is saving me from publishing?  

when my wonderful husband comes over to work with his computer skills to fix it.  he cares about the spaces only because i seem to care about it so much.  and there is an update to the software-so we decide to try that.  and in doing so lose all the work he did a year or so ago to make the colors work and the title work (if you squint there at the top right you can almost see the words).  and some of the text now in my other posts looks a little wonky.

so now we're looking at some other things behind the scenes with the domain and interface and other stuff i don't really understand.  i get to try out wordpress to replace whatever the current interface is to see if i like it better.  at first glance it has the auto double space defalt too.  and that leads to a question on the name-and it can be whatever i want and do i want to change it??

so.....

thank you for grace??

and come back later???

and if you happen to have any blogging advice related to wordpress or some such technical thing you can e-mail me at;

mel at lucashome dot net

and yesterday's post???

it seems that every time i paste from Word i get an error-we're working on that too.  

in This place?

Written by:admin
Published on December 13th, 2013 @ 12:32:00 pm , using 908 words, 515 views

Surely the Lord was in this place, and I wasn?t even aware of it! Genesis 28:16

i come in the door grumbling grumbling.

we?ve been spending ourselves this week on behalf of Isaiah 58 people.

the exhaustion is beginning to take it?s toll.

Wednesday, i was at the dentist sitting in the chair next to my daughter and the hygienist completely lost in October?s National Geographic.  So much so that they kept asking me questions and talking to me and i was completely oblivious with my head in the pictures of N. Korea and the Congo.  Finally my daughter yells out; ?MOM! It?s time to go!?  i look up and they are both staring at me as if they maybe had mentioned this already a couple of times??

late last night, somewhere between pulling into the driveway and my front door, i lost the car keys.

still, i left that to the light of the next day and attempted to make a birthday cake for my daughter.  the pan tipped and spilled half-baked cake all over the oven.

i plop myself down on the couch to try that too again tomorrow and look out my window.....no lights.

those dang squirrels chewed a bulb off-now only ¼ of them light up. 

after rehearsing spelling words with my 3rd grader in the car this morning and shooing him off with a story to remember why there is a silent K in front of Knight, i drive home and the grumbling begins to rumble and spill out within. 

pulling into the driveway and i remember those dang lights.  and in my grumbling profanity over the lights welled up within and dang wasn?t the word i wanted to use. 

i told myself it was silly to speak so about Christmas lights. 

i am a complete mess.

last night driving home the words to myself were instead; ?i am a complete fool.?

 all the volunteers for this week are looking to me to lead them.  my children are looking to me to lead them.  profanity wells up within about that.

grumbling all the way i plop myself down and am irritated that the whole wide world seems to go on without needing to stop in front of the King of Kings, the Wonder of a Counselor, but no, not i. i am desperate and needy.  and completely irritated at that fact.  (do you see it?  those lies that are such nonsense, but man, in the moment they seem so true.)

and he?s working hard, that infuriated accuser.  he?s giving it all he?s got to keep me right here.  exhausted and irritated. profaning the Son of God and His provision....or perceived lack there of.

flipping over the promise chart-i read these words:

The Promise of Victory

?Who is it that overcomes the world?  Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.? 1 john 5:5

oh and those words begin to do their work.

i make my tea and block out the rest of the accusations about how this chai has too much sugar and i?m on December 8th in ?The Greatest Gift? so i should just give it up. 

I open Ann's new book to page 65

The only words on the page staring up at me are these:

Surely the Lord was in this place, and I wasn?t even aware of it.  Genesis 28:16

 

and i sit and let these tidings of comfort wash over me, lingering before turning the page for more.

(if you don?t have the book-the focus on the reading is Genesis 28:10-16-read that and the rest will make sense i think?)

You can feel it.....like life?s this stairway that you just never stop climbing.....Like all these lists are rungs, like your failures stretch from earth to heaven, like all your rest feels like lying down on one unforgiving stone.

-Ann Voskamp The Greatest Gift p.68

and the tears that fill my eyes blur the rest of the words on the page.

the bugs and the foolishness and the cake and the congo and it all does feel like rest* on one unforgiving stone. 

and today, i need my King to be a Victorious King, and my Shepherd to be a gentle Shepherd, and my Counselor to be a Wonder of a Counselor.  He is all those things and so very much more.

Love has come.

daily rescuing.

daily saving.

daily strengthening.

daily quenching.

daily loving, oh how deeply loving with the very word needed-even if it?s ?technically? days behind schedule.

sigh.  the grumbling and profanity** has stopped.  although i would not complain if the neighborhood boys did some target practice on some squirrels.

Holy Holy Holy

Lord God Almighty

Merciful and Mighty

in This very place

Holy Holy Holy

are You,

my Love.

my only Hope.

my only source of Strength.

my true Rest.

 

*He taught me about rest.  I sat in Matthew pondering these two verses side by side (11:28-30 and 13:22) and i did think of blogging on it-but the words have been hard to pin down these days-maybe soon?

** Also quoted in Ann?s book these word of Elizabeth Elliot; ?[Profanity] is treating as meaningless that which is freighted with meaning.  Treating as common that which is hallowed.  Regarding as a mere triviality what is really a divine design.  Profanity is failure to see the inner mystery.?  p.69 in The Greatest Gift.
my profanity was actually not in the words i wanted to speak over the Christmas lights, it went so much deeper than that. 

 

Love and Lights on a Tuesday

Written by:admin
Published on December 3rd, 2013 @ 10:28:00 pm , using 430 words, 688 views

i wish i could have captured the depth of color of these lights

tuesdays have become my one day to be alone in my house.  all the kids at school and the one day a week my husband takes a temporary seat at the office instead of working from home.  i have come to look forward to this day-it?s my Sabbath in a way. but today jeremy had the day off. 

Sunday his mom made chex-mix.  Monday he came home from dropping hannah off at school in the morning a little late with grocery sacks full of chex and pretzels and peanuts.

chex-mix is one of his most favorite things.  you?d think he was 10 again.  but monday came with lots of work, so there was no time to oblige.

***~~~~~~~***~~~~~~~***

i mentioned Saturday that i wished we had put up lights.  jeremy reminded me that his ladder is in the mountains.  we haven?t gotten lights up for a couple of years now.  we didn?t get to it this weekend.  snow is headed our way this week. typically once the snow comes-that?s that.

Christmas lights are one of my most favorite things.  you?d think i was 10 again.  but the weekend came with lots of other stuff so there was no time to oblige.

***~~~~~~~***~~~~~~~***

this tuesday morning, jeremy?s out in his office.  he was supposed to have yesterday off too-but things come up and sometimes it doesn?t happen as planned.  i figure today will be the same, i make my tea and heat up the oven to 200.  today is a slower-paced day and there?s time for chex-mix.  it will bring him joy. 

out in his office jeremy calls his dad to borrow his ladder.  today is mostly a day off and there?s time for lights before the weather turns this afternoon.  it will bring me joy.

he comes in to the smells of chili powder and worcestershire sauce.  he peaks around the corner and his eyes light up- ?chex-mix?!  yeah!?

he heads down under the house and comes up with the outside lights- ?Christmas lights?! yeah!?

***~~~~~~~***~~~~~~~***

by pick-up the sky has turned and the snow has begun to fall.  it is freeeeezing.  but the joy of the lights already twinkling amidst the flakes falling consumes me.  knowing that because tuesday worked out to be a day off after all and the weather waited till late afternoon to turn and my husband?s delight to bring me joy- all added up to this.

on this ordinary day, of this ordinary life.....

getting to love and being loved.....

oh the joy!

  linking up with Emily Freeman:

 







The Lord, my Shepherd

Written by:admin
Published on November 24th, 2013 @ 02:21:00 am , using 857 words, 564 views

 North Carolina sky

Psalm 23

God is my shepherd

i won?t be wanting

i won?t be wanting

He makes me rest in fields of green. by quiet streams

even while i?m walking...... thru the valley......... of death and dying.

i will not fear, cause You are with me, You?re always with me.

 

i don?t even know how to write this post.  how to paint the picture for you to understand how those words nourish in a dry and weary land where there is no water.

in the middle of the week as i lay in bed, unable to sleep because of the trauma of the day, i recited the entire thing to myself over and over and over again.

this week was full of heart wrenching struggles. the possibility that my neighbors (little) dog would have to be put down because of my (very big) dog jumping the fence.  rejoicing over that outcome (she made it through surgery and will be ok) and stressing over a now large bill to pay and new fence to build from a small bank account.  the time at the day center for homeless families sitting alongside a man with his head in his hands weeping over the news of his little boy far away-6 yrs. old and both legs amputated.  my pregnant sister in the hospital again.  too far away for me to visit.

and a month ago, in the middle of our flood, i buy a ticket that will take me to the other side of the US for the weekend.  i couldn?t see into the future to be sure that it would be ok to go.  i just had to trust that it would be.

it?s not really.  but i?m going anyway.

when we booked the flight/car/hotel i couldn?t see thousands of miles away what the hotel we were choosing would be like.  i just had to choose one.

here?s where the words fail me.

so i?ll just say that i needed my Shepherd to comfort me and make me rest when the fields weren?t green at all and there were no quiet streams.  i never noticed till now that following that wonderful image (i mean can?t you just see in your mind those fields and the stream?)...following that

is the valley.

of death and dying.

David says he won?t fear.

why?

because His Shepherd is with him,

He?s always with him.

well, my Shepherd did make me rest in spite of the lack of green or quiet.  and i thanked Him so very much.  That His presence was constant and this weekend could still be a time of rest and refreshment...even here.

but then

in the middle of the night

bugs

bugs crawling on me. all these little bugs crawling around in my bed. suffice it to say.  i freak out. and i leave. and through my sobs i manage to find myself a more suitable place to stay. 

................................................

i don?t even know.

here i am.  this week?  i have nothing.  i know nothing.

and at 2 am far from home i?m wrestling with deep stuff.  i wanted rest.

Whole only comes after broken.  Healing only comes after wounds.  Are you willing to go a bit further and see?.......It doesn?t mean that God is trying to teach us a lesson in our difficulty.  Perhaps He is simply creating a masterpiece.  -emily freeman ? a million little ways p. 104, 105

perhaps He is creating a masterpiece.

am i willing to go a bit further and see?

man the wrestling is hard work.  and i won?t be attending the Barn event rested.  i?ll be attending quite fragile and quite simply exhausted i predict. 

but the beauty (masterpiece?) of this weekend is that i never questioned

that He was with me

the entire time.

When i couldn?t find words, only sobbs-the Spirit translated my groans for me.

when i began to condemn myself He brought to mind just the thing i needed.  (one example: condemning myself for freaking out over the bugs and not just toughing it out-and i remembered Corrie ten Boom and the biting flies.  she?d put up with much thus far in that concentration camp ?but the flies were too much for her too.)

He shows me that there are quiet streams here too, in this valley of death and dying.  He sticks in my mind jon foreman?s words: ?Two things you told me: that You are strong and You love me.....yes You love me.?

and

Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?  Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father.  And even the very hairs of your head are numbered.  So don?t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. (matthew 10)

and internet at the new hotel so i can stream pandora and have music to drown out any lies the enemy wants to whisper.

Yes.  He is my Shepherd.

i won?t be wanting.

i won?t be wanting.

And this same God who takes care of me

will supply all your needs

from His glorious riches,

which have been given to us

in Christ Jesus.

(Philippians something i think)

gains and losses

Written by:admin
Published on November 20th, 2013 @ 12:05:00 pm , using 609 words, 430 views

the contrast of two clock towers - London, England

Those who have attained everlasting life in the vision of God doubtless know very well that it is no mere bribe, but the very consummation of their earthly discipleship; but we who have not yet attained it cannot know this in the same way, and cannot even begin to know it at all except by continuing to obey and finding the first reward of our obedience in our increasing power to desire the ultimate reward.  Just in proportion as the desire grows, our fear lest it should be a mercenary desire will die away and finally be recognized as an absurdity.  But probably this will not, for most of us, happen in a day; poetry replaces grammar, gospel replaces law, longing transforms obedience, as gradually as the tide lifts a grounded ship.  
                                      -C.S. Lewis from ?The Weight of Glory?

 so we?ve spent some time as a family talking about things.  this house.  school choices.  life choices. about what we lose by staying put, and what we gain.  because that?s just it.  every choice comes with both losses and gains.  the school choices are still in process-one has to move on as he?s entering 6th grade next year.  but everyone, everyone, wanted to stay put in this very house. 

at that meeting-when i spoke-passion welled up from within and spilled out and the words, they. just. came.

that i?m all in with regards to the ministry.  we?re all in. 

and i can?t speak for my family-and it doesn?t seem like any of them were in a place of questioning it all anyway- but something has shifted in me.  this process of late has culminated with an inner shift.

nothing has changed without, but within poetry is replacing grammar and longing is transforming obedience. 

this life we are living is beginning to look like art.

for today, this is where we will stay and do art.

     my heart is growing in contentment more consistently. 

i?ve always had this problem of pining away for something other than whatever it is that i have.  maybe it?s the growing up in a military family where moving was the norm rather than staying put?  the thanksgiving lists help refocus my vision.  but the restlessness for something other is always there.  this Spirit given shift has not removed my restlessness completely-there will always be that this side of heaven as it is heaven that my heart is longing for?  but the restlessness that comes from wanting a different picture painted, a different outcome, a different process, and if i really dig deep enough and am honest, the restlessness?   it?s restlessness wanting a different me

i wrote a bit ago that art + no shame = joy.

i have been living ashamed of my art.

ashamed of my home

ashamed of what i do with my time, or don?t do with my time

ashamed of the gospel (i know it is the power of God for those who believe, ..... but still often i am ashamed of it)

ashamed of my writing (the reason i haven't really told anyone about this blog?)

ashamed of.......

me

that grounded ship of shame is being lifted by the tide

and my understanding of art is deepening

and the joy i?ve been running hard after

that traveling joy that Jesus promised could not be taken

it?s not been found in where i thought it would be

the tide rolls it in and deposits it on the shore of my heart as the shame is lifted out.

and so yes, i?m in.  all in.

the secondary gains and losses ever present

but with shame lost?

JOY gained

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