Monday, April 30, 2018

What You Can't Cure You Endure

My phone rang while I was at the doctor's office. I immediately had an ominous feeling, and as soon as I dispensed with my greeting, I said: "What happened?" On the other line, I heard stroke, seizure, non-functioning, and hospice in a weary, matter of fact tone. My dear friend's mom is still in the land of the living for now, but she is pretty close to meeting her Maker. I hung up the phone prayerful, sad and hopeful.

When we traveled to Jamaica in December, we visited a close relative who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer but who appeared to have this struggle behind her. It seemed like all the conventional treatments were working, albeit slowly. But since December she had gotten progressively worse. While hoping for a miracle,

Monday, April 23, 2018

Don't Let Another Wounded Soldier Die

The Girl - this is what she became.  She no longer had a name - everyone called her The Girl.  The Girl attended church and was a member of the Youth Choir.  The Youth Choir really blessed others when they sang, but as these things go, not everyone believed or lived what they sang.  The choir director could only do so much to ascertain a person's spiritual condition.

The Girl got pregnant. They were many cries of "How could this happen?"  "She sang every Sunday", and "Oh my goodness."  To hear it being told all of the ones condemning her were near perfect in their youth and never made any mistakes.  The Girl left the church and as far as I knew never came back.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Book Review - Falling Free: Rescued from the Life I Always Wanted by Shannan Martin

I'm not sure what prompted me to buy this book but as I read it I was glad I did. I've never lived on a farm, nor do I  have an innate love for pickles and brine but I could relate to the author's description of the joy and liberty of what trusting God feels like.

Shannan used her life and circumstances to demonstrate what faith can look like. For the author it was stepping out of her comfort zone by living in an area some would deem unsafe with no blue ribbon schools in sight, leaving high paying corporate jobs with no future sense of a prized stability, adopting children from every walk of life and ultimately being happy with where God had placed her. It was not a superficial happy either - like "o gee look at me, I'm happy in spite of my circumstances." Instead, it's a happiness where she saw the truths of God's word borne out in her life. So much so, I'm convinced that if this book were not written no one would believe her because her life now seems counter to everything that we thought would make us happy.

As Christians, we're not of this world; we ought to have a different

Monday, April 9, 2018

Community that Motivates

I have struggled with the concept of being a part of a community since relocating. Prior to moving, my family and I were part of a vibrant community where we felt seen, known and heard. There was no real protocol that governed our interactions except our connectedness. If someone was sick, we ministered to them.

There were instances where we cleaned a sick person's house since this would not have happened otherwise. There was no judgment - only a willingness to help and share a burden. If there was job loss we prayed and helped in practical ways. We were all inadvertently responsible for each other's children. I knew that other parents would discipline my children without wondering if they had crossed a line; I did the same for theirs.  And there were good times. Because we were there for each other, it seemed that there was always an opportunity to eat and fellowship with each other. The fellowship and simply doing life together strengthened our bond. The biggest thing we had in common was our faith and from there it snowballed in a beautiful way.

Monday, April 2, 2018

Women of the Word - Cintia Listenbee

As an encourager, I was looking for fellow encouragers online. I kept looking until I found this gem: Cintia Listenbee at Cintia has an economy of words that ministers to your heart. From Brazil, her culture is evident in her writing. I love learning about her customs while she shares her faith. Cintia is also multilingual, so infrequently some posts are written in Portuguese (which I allow Google to translate). Regardless of language or culture, her strong faith emanates from a blog post. Meet this month's Woman of the Word - Cintia Listenbee.

Cintia Listenbee