Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A New Hope

This is the forty-first and final segment in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

Jan 1, 2010

A new year, a new hope. The doctor said, “Congratulations!” I simply say, “Thank you Lord!”

I cannot begin to understand your great mercy, so with empty hands I humbly come and kneel before you. Thank you Lord, you have heard the cry of this broken heart and given, indeed, “many more sunrises.”

I do not know why you chose to heal me when I see so many walking through so much, I am truly humbled Lord. Accomplish your purpose in me, may I never forget what you have revealed to this fragile soul. May I ever live to declare that you are God, there is none like you. I join with all creation in declaring that you alone are worthy of all praise.... my Creator, my Savior, my King.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Amen and Amen

This is the fortieth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 31, 2009

Thank you, Lord, for a night of sweet rest. Surely you alone have brought peace to my heart. This morning I ask that peace will continue to reign as I hear from the doctor what lot you have chosen for me. This I know, because of you, I have a beautiful inheritance.

Whispers again this morning, Lord….glimpses of life yet to be lived. And yet, as you continue putting together the pieces in the puzzle of my life, creating the perfect picture you have already pre-destined, if you touch and bring healing, how do I not become as Hezekiah….desperate before and then, after the touch of your hand, full of pride because of what you have done.

Praise is the antidote to pride….Psalm 150 declares it. As long as I have breath, I will praise you oh God! No matter what today’s word, no matter the prognosis. “I will sing unto the Lord as long as I live, I will give praise to my God while I have breath in me!”

Oh Lord, whether it is pride in “walking strong” with you or pride in that you would chose to extend your merciful hand of healing to me…cast it away Lord! I bow before you, I humble myself before you. Keep me humble oh God, may I ever find myself kneeling before you!

Oh God, heal to show your great glory….humble me to show your mighty majesty. May the days of being boastful or proud in that which you alone have given….wisdom, provision, strength….may I always know and proclaim it is all from your hand. You ARE the Alpha and Omega of this world and of my life. Amen and Amen.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

You Are God

This is the thirty-ninth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 30, 2009

Peace pervades my heart tonight Father, thank you!

Anxious this morning, yes…..for fear of the unknown still held sway. But tonight I am at rest. You have given quiet to my body and my soul, may it last tonight and into the morning.

You are God and there is none like unto you. This is what I have come to know this past two months…..You are awesome and mighty; merciful and kind, your steadfast love is eternal. In you I place my life, oh Lord, you know my heart, you know my request. Jesus, my great high priest, I ask you to petition our Father with your perfect prayer for me this night.

I wait for you Lord…as the watchman for the morning. It has been a good journey….I will continue to follow….even as you carry me.

Monday, December 6, 2010

You Alone Are Able

This is the thirty-eighth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 29, 2009

I feel as the three young men of Israel this morning, Lord. As Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego faced the fiery furnace, then proclaimed…in faith…in knowing you…”Know this, our God whom we serve IS able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace and he will deliver us out of your hand. But if not, be it known to you, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image you have set up.

That IS the place of my heart this morning Lord, as I come to the end of this part of my journey. I know you are able to heal me, I know you have already delivered me from the hand of the enemy, for heaven awaits where there will be no more sickness, no more death. But here and now, I know you are able and I am asking that you deliver me from this enemy which has invaded my body. Even so, no matter what you have chosen, I will worship you for you alone are God.

I admire King Hezekiah. Much like the three who walked with you in the fire, he is under fire from without and within. When his enemies openly mocked you and his own people had no faith in you he did not trust in chariots and horses, but rather he made his petition known to you. He spread out before you the reports, the letters, the threats and then….he prayed. And you answered. I too spread out the report, the CT scans done and yet to come and I ask that you deliver me, for you alone can destroy the enemy that threatens……

Is that your whisper I hear again Lord…..a strong voice that proclaims, “Because you have prayed….because you have cast yourself upon me as your only hope…because you have received the trust, the hope, the faith I have offered….because I AM the one who determines all, who knows all….”This year you shall eat what grows of itself and in the second year what springs from that. Then in the third year sow and reap and plant vineyards and eat their fruit. You shall again take root downward and bear fruit upward.”

Lord, I do not know how, but I do believer you have shown me I will see many more sunrises here, in the land of the living and I shall again take root downward and bear fruit. I rejoice in your promise but more, I rejoice in you!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

A Plea for Mercy

This is the thirty-seventh in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 28, 2009

Today, Oh God, I need you to heal this heart which is breaking with fear and to bind up the wounds which have afflicted me. You who numbered the stars, who prepares the rain, who cares for the sparrow, who gives food to the hungry and gives protection to your people, from you, oh God, I plead for mercy. I know it is not of my own worth or merit or accomplishments that I can come before you this morning, but it is solely because of your steadfast love.

Your delight, oh Lord, is not in the strength of horses nor is your pleasure in the leap of a man, but you take pleasure in those who fear you, in those who hope in your steadfast love. You know my heart. You know the self-willed bent of my soul, the pride in my life, the thoughts which come. Forgive, oh Lord, I cast myself at your feet… as the Syro-Phoenician woman, asking only for the crumbs which fall. For so long I have thought myself worthy to sit at your table, but you have opened my eyes to who I am.

Yes, I will one day be seated at the marriage feast of the lamb, but it is only because of what you have done. I have nothing to offer but empty hands, nothing to wear but the robe of righteousness you gave, nothing to share but the story of salvation….continue to take the blinders from eyes, oh Lord. I do not like the pain, but I embrace your plan, for in the fellowship of suffering, I am seeing you.

Monday, November 22, 2010

My Help

This is the thirty-sixth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 27, 2009

Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob. Psalm 146.

If I were to write this Psalm, I would declare, "Blessed is he who has no need of help…blessed is he who has the ability to help himself…blessed is he who has good friends near to help." But your word declares "Blessed is help is the God of Jacob”.

How can this be? Because THEN my hope is in the Lord my God who created all, who is faithful, who is just and compassionate, who sets men free and opens blind eyes. My hope is in the one who watches over me…a sojourner…a stranger and pilgrim in this land.

Oh Lord, remove far from me the idea that “God helps those who help themselves.” Help me Lord to grow up into dependency on you. May I be a child in my need of you, yet mature in my obedience unto you. I don’t fully understand it Lord, but somehow the more I grow in you, the more dependent I become. Truly it is the way of your Kingdom.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Filled with Wonder

This is the thirty-fifth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

Christmas Morning 2009

Today we celebrate your coming! It seems like only yesterday I stood in that field overlooking Bethlehem....such wonder, such amazement, such understanding that you came to that tiny insignificant little town, making it…for that night…the most important place on this earth you created. Creator became one with His creation! Such mystery. Such love!

I cannot help but wonder….and I know you understand because you walked among us, as us….I cannot help but wonder where next Christmas will find me? Will this be but a memory, this time of ill health, of concern? Will I have walked through more pain, more surgery? Will I be home in heaven with you?

Oh God, I wonder, but most of all I am filled with the wonder of you, that I need not wonder at all!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

My Refuge

This is the thirty-fourth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 24, 2009

This is where it finally comes to, O Lord. “I have fled to you for refuge.”

As your word declares, even as your servant cried out, “Give ear to my pleas for mercy! I remember the days of old; I meditate on all that you have done.”

You have been merciful, Lord, even when I did not plead for mercy. You have worked mightily in the lives and hearts of my family, my children. This I count dear. I remember Lord, and I know….I have deserved none of it, how often I have even failed to ask. Yet in your great love and kindness you poured out your blessings. I did not always understand, but as I remember, I see your hand so clearly.

Now Lord, “I stretch out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like a parched land.” How I need you Lord, more than life itself. I need you TO live. Transform my mind, O Lord, that the first thought I have every morning is of you, that in every moment of each decision I make throughout the day, I will inquire of you. “Teach me to do your will, for you are my God! Let your good Spirit lead me.”

You are my only hope. Not doctors, not procedures, not “the odds”. In you alone I trust….indeed, I HAVE fled to you for refuge.

“What will this next week bring, the tests, the CT scan, the doctor appointment?” These are the questions which plagued my mind this morning as I gazed upon yet another glorious winter sunrise. With surety you directed me to Psalm 143. How it mirrored the very depths of my own soul. I throw myself upon your mercy Lord, I cry out to you alone who is mighty to save.

You alone hold my life in your hands, Jesus. It is only by your stripes I am healed. You alone bore the pain. I think of little Gabe last night, he was so sad as he understood, perhaps for the first time, that you had to go to the cross. Oh Lord, may I be as Gabe, sad over what my sin caused you to endure, yet rejoicing that you came as a baby, you endured as a man…and you died as a slain lamb to be my Savior. I am so sorry for my sin, my pride, my arrogance, for all that you bore on the cross…but so thankful you chose to die for me.

I know I can trust you my Lord, it is not in fear but with joy that I flee to you for refuge. In you there is safety. You are the secure place where I can be kept this week and in the weeks and months and years to come. Hide me Lord, keep me from venturing too far.

“For your names sake, O Lord, preserve my life!”

Friday, November 12, 2010

Do Not Fear

This is the thirty-third in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 23, 2009

You have opened these blind eyes, Lord, plainly I see I am that woman with the issue of blood. Without your touch I will grow weaker and weaker, not just physically but in my spirit, in my soul. For too long I have looked everywhere else to solve the issues of my life…how I desire to rely solely on you.

Lord Jesus, I reach out to touch you... to grab hold of the hem of your garment ….knowing that in you comes not only my physical healing but the healing that comes from your words, “Go in Peace”.

I am done, Lord, with trying to do it my way, with believing that God helps those who help themselves. I want to abandon myself to you…where ever that takes me. Touch me, Lord, as I touch you.

And I hear you whisper……”Do not fear, only believe”.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Heart of a Child

This is the thirty-second in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 21, 2009

The shortest day of the year has come. Always it is a turning point, always a day of celebration for me. Will this mark, as well, the beginning of the end of a long, dark season for me, Lord? The darkness has at times threatened to overwhelm me. If it had not been for the glorious light of your love, your mercy, your comfort, your presence…surely I would have been swallowed up.

I see more than ever Father how utterly helpless I am. All that I thought I could do, I could handle, all that was in my realm, I tackled without thought of even asking you. I see so plainly now I have missed so much of seeing you at work in my life. Give me the heart of a child, of a Zach, of a Jude….one who still asks, who needs, who may even cry now and then…one who may question when I don’t get my way but is quickly comforted by your arms. Make me as a child, needy and dependent on you. Though you have enabled me to do so much, may I see I truly can DO NOTHING without you!

May you be the first place I go, the first thought that enters my thoughts, the first hope I have when I have need. May I not, “climb in secret to the top of the fridge to sneak the cookies”, but rather ask, that you in your great love and compassion, your justice and mercy, might give to me as you deem wise.

You have broken me Lord, but it is good. The drive, the need to do, to be personally involved…. slowly you have brought me back to a place of wanting nothing more than to sit here and be with you, to talk with you, to hear from you, to know our heart, your plans, your solitude.

Oh Father, Abba, may you become bigger and wiser in my eyes….may I see you for who you are…the giver of all good things….the one who does not withhold from those who love you…the one who asks…almost begs…that I come to you and ask of you. Teach me what it means to ask in your name…to seek you…to know your plans and desires and to ask that I might come along for the ride. Take me with you Lord, wherever you choose to go.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

In The Fire

This is the thirty-first in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 13, 2009

James 1…As brought to my attention by the Holy Spirit in Brett’s teaching this morning…..

Why have I not landed here before, Lord? Was I not ready to hear? Was I afraid to ask why? And yet, without my verbalizing the question you respond…

“I have a purpose in the trials you are walking through. As metal is put to the fire to purge it of impurities, so I am placing you in the fire of fear, of questioning, of anxiety….that I might purge these things from you. They are impurities that weigh you down, that hinder your faith. Let the fire burn away all fear…‘Lo, I am with you’, all questions… 'I am the Alpha and Omega', all anxiety…’My sheep know my voice’.

I desire that you not simply endure, but that this will be turned to extol my greatness and glory…for others, yes… but truly for you to see. I want to lift up your eyes as you have so often prayed, to see me in My glory, to see me and no longer fear sickness and death…to see me and no longer question what I may or may not do……to see me and be at rest…no longer anxious about what tomorrow may bring. In seeing me you will trust…absolutely….and in turn I will give you strength to bear all that comes your way, for nothing can harm you….the you that is eternal.”

Ah Lord, may it be. Open my eyes, burn away all that hinders me from seeing you. Lift up my head, teach me how to rest and trust in you. I chose to count this time as joy, Lord. Let complaining be removed far from me, let your praise be upon my lips, even as it overflows from my heart.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Do You Believe?

This is the thirtieth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

Dec 12, 2009

“Do you believe?” The words were so audible, surely you were here speaking them to me. “Robyn, do you believe?”

My mind scurried to the scripture where you posed those word to Martha, thinking I KNEW what you were asking. Now I am left asking, “Do I really believe?”

Martha came as I. She knew you had the power to heal and even to give life where death had laid claim. “Lord if you had been here (if you had answered my FIRST prayer) my brother would not have died.” (I know you could have healed him Lord…I don’t understand why you didn’t!) But…even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you. (I still know you can work in this situation…my question is…WILL you? Come on Jesus, all you have to do is ask. Please ask!)

You responded, “Your brother will rise again.”

Like me, Martha’s response was the ‘fall back faith’ I find in my own life. “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection in the last day.” (Jesus, I know, it is about heaven. There all things will be made right…nor more death, sickness, pain or sorrow. That is the ULTIMATE healing. But today, Lord, I was hoping for healing, for life, HERE. With my lips I give you the correct answer, but surely you know my heart.)

Your reply, Jesus, cuts to the very core. “I AM the resurrection and the life. Whosoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he lives and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die.”

Is this not what Martha just said? What am I missing? Was it that Martha simply believed you had an “in” with the Father? That as her friend, maybe you could call in a favor or two? Her eyes saw only the here and now…that was all she could focus on…her pain, her sorrow, her grief. Resurrection someday brought no relief, no joy….not this day.

Is that me, Lord? Have I simply asked of you as I would a friend who owes me a favor? Have I thought if I petitioned enough, prayed and begged long enough, maybe God would answer my prayers?

Lift my eyes to see you, Jesus, the great I AM. You don’t give life, you ARE life. You ARE the resurrection. You ARE healing. You ARE all in all. Though you should touch this body of mine today, some day, at some point, I will still die. I will depart from this earthly shell. My hope is not in what you can do for me here, but in WHO you are!

Oh Jesus, lift up my eyes beyond my narrow scope of this world. Yes, like Martha, like Mary…I desire, I ask that you give me physical healing and life, here, today. But cement the answer in my heart to the higher question, “Do you believe?”

No matter what happens here, oh Lord, keep my eyes fixed on eternity….on You, the Eternal One. Cause me to know, deep in my soul, that in you I have hope. Not in the answers you give or the things you might do…but in you and you alone. I believe oh Lord, now help my unbelief.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

I Wait for the Lord

This is the twenty-ninth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 10, 2010

Psalm 130 “I wait for the Lord, my soul waits and in his word I hope. My soul waits for the Lord, more than watchmen for the morning.”

It has seemed a long night, Lord, a long two months, a long year. You have brought me to a place of waiting for you, of longing for you.

At first read, I thought only of the watchmen, longing to be done with the night that they might rest, that they might let down their guard, that they might be warmed by the fire of dawns light.

But it is not the morning you have caused me to ultimately desire…though I do long for this seemingly endless night to come to an end. Rather as the watchmen desires the morning, so I desire you….more than an end to the night…you are the eternal dawn. The light that never ceases to shine…the new day without end!

Oh Lord, I love you, I desire you, but the very fact that my first thought was a desire for the end of “this night” reveals the depth of what remains in my heart.

And you would speak, “Oh Israel (Oh child of mine) hope in the Lord, for with the Lord there is steadfast love”.

May my eyes be lifted above my circumstance, oh Lord, as I see you in the storm, may I desire your truth…your voice…your mercy… your grace… your redemption… your forgiveness.

Carry me Lord, close to your heart.

Only By Your Mercy

This is the twenty-eighth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 6, 2009

Psalm 119…How long since I have read it in its entirety. Surely the truth has always been there, only now I am seeing it with a new heart and new eyes. Countless times the Psalmist declares his love for your law, your precepts, your commands and your statutes. He tells of his desire, his attempts, his accomplishments at keeping that very law…looking, perhaps even disdainfully, on those who do not.

He pleads his case, that you should answer his prayers because he keeps your laws. He asks to be given life, according to your justice. Oh God, how that has been me. “See what I have done, Lord. See how I have kept His ways, world! See, I am righteous. I have chosen well. See God….and now give me life because of all I have done.”

It is not my seeking, my doing, my keeping, rather it is “MY GOD.” All my promises are empty for my flesh is weak and so swiftly I will fail. It is good to keep your commands, for they keep me in a way that is right and true. But it is only by your mercy I breathe, only because of your Holy spirit I can praise you.

Seek your servant Lord, I deserve nothing, yet I fall upon your mercy.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

To See You

This is the twenty-seventh in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 3, 2009

Job, how much he went through! How often I have read his story and thought, “Yeah…go for it…persevere…show that God is in control and can do all that he chooses…for his purpose!” But now I understand Job, I feel just a small amount of the pain, the fear, the sorrow, the waiting, the enduring…though my plight is so much smaller. Thus, I too find humbleness and comfort in the majesty of God’s voice speaking and sharing and communicating with Job from the whirlwind .

Oh Lord, I heard that voice in the early moments of all this; have I moved or have you been silent for a season, causing me to stand firm, to affirm all that I know to be true?

Even as Job declares, “I have heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you.” All these years I have heard of you, read of you, come to know about you; you have brought faith by the hearing of your word. Now, like Job, my eye needs to see you…in your splendor, your majesty, your eternal I AM. To be overwhelmed by your presence, to fall before you in wonder, in repentance, in humility.

Bring that from this pain, oh God. May my lips not speak foolishly of things I have no knowledge of. You do all things well…for your glory…for reason I may never know. Reveal your majesty to me Lord, give me a renewed glimpse of God.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Do I Know You?

This is the twenty-sixth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

December 1, 2009

Do I know you Lord? I have read about you, taught about you, given my life to you…but do I know you? Is that what you are doing in this time? Are you taking that which I perceive to be difficult and fearful and using it to reveal yourself to me?

This I know, Lord, in the darkness of night when fear closes in, when even my very breath seems to ebb, it is your name I cry sweet Jesus. Men and medicine cannot bring the help I ultimately need. I need the help that comes from knowing that you and you alone are my keeper (Psalm 121). Because of you “the moon shall not stumble me by night…you will keep me from evil…you will keep my life”.

The nights are hard, Lord, it is in the hour of darkness when my body betrays me. I will cling to your promise…tonight…that the moon shall not strike me…that darkness will not cause my body to react in fear…that you ARE the keeper of my life.

Do I know you Lord? I do, in part, and yet you would have me to know you more. For in knowing comes trust and in trust, is rest. I am laboring, Lord, laboring to enter into your rest. Dispel my unbelief. I believe that you have saved me and that you can heal me. May I rest in your steadfast love, in who you are, in knowing that you do all things well.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

If It Be Possible

This is the twenty-fifth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

November 30, 2009

“If it be possible….” These were the words that you spoke to your father, Jesus. These are the words I echo in prayer this morning. For you, Jesus, there could be no other way, for you came to purchase my salvation and the salvation of all who would be given you by your Father. For the first time, in my illness, in my test of health, in my fear of knowing what may lie ahead, I am reminded again of how human you were. For the first time I grasp a small understanding of what caused you to be sorrowful and troubled. Surely in your humanity there was a desire not to have to walk through the pain which lay ahead. And so you prayed, “If there be any other way….”

That is my prayer this morning Father. I catch a glimpse of the pain I might have to walk through and I am troubled, fearful, I tremble at the specter of that journey and the death that may follow. To say I have no fear would be to lie, to sin. Like Jesus said to his disciples, there, in the garden, “The Spirit is willing, but my flesh…..ah Lord…it is so weak.”

I do not want to be tempted to walk away from what you may ask. I need you Lord, I need to seek your face, to kneel before you, that I might once again be strengthened by you. It was in his time with you, Father, that Jesus found strength and purpose, the ability to go forward.

I do ask…if it be possible, let this cup pass. If there is something you can accomplish only in this, give me a heart that is willing to say, “Your will be done.” And then give me the understanding it is of you when the time is at hand to walk through it.

Your will is a mystery at times, on Lord. Until you speak else wise, I will continue to petition you, to ask you to heal me…even as I ask that of you now. Remove the nodule, the growth, let this cup pass from me.

I cry out to you, my Father. Give strength to my flesh that I might be found crying out to you ever more.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A Beginning and An End

This is the twenty-fourth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

November 19, 2009

Am I hearing you, Lord? Sweet whispers again, last night following Brett’s teaching and during communion, “It has a beginning and an end.”

Just as Isaiah had a mission, a purpose, a directive, difficult and humiliating though it was, it was something he would always be remembered for; having to walk naked and exposed before the people. And then there is Ezekial, directed by God to lie on his side for 390 days, then 40 on the next…to eat food cooked over dung…illogical to my mind yet filled with purpose in the mind of God.

Sitting there at your feet last night, remembering your purpose Jesus, the shedding of your blood, the breaking of your body, you spoke to my heart. “This is my purpose for you, Robyn. You may not understand, you may feel open and exposed and very uncomfortable…it may not seem logical…but it IS my purpose. This is how you are to be about the Father’s business. Walk through this. It has a beginning AND it has an end. You will arise and walk forth from it.”

I heard hope in that Lord, did I hear you correctly? This will have an end, as that of Isaiah and Ezekial, an end here while I am yet “in the land of the living”. O Lord, confirm that in my heart. For today it has given me hope and comfort, knowing that this season may be difficult, but I will live and remain to tell of it.

You are using this that you have given to reveal to me more of you and more of my own heart…how wide is that chasm, Lord. I plead as David of old, “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”

Use this Lord to break me, to shape me, to make me over into your image. May my heart ever be tender towards those who walk a similar path. May your Spirit flow forth from this wounded body with healing water that refreshes all who pass by.

May the season of pain, of wondering, of fear pass, but may that which it produces remain forever.

Amen and Amen.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

In The Midst of November

This is the twenty-third in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

November 17, 2009

What a difference an hour with you can make, my precious Lord. Agitated and weary I awoke this morning, unable to focus on you or your Word. And then you beckoned, ”Step outside…the wind is blowing, the sun is about to rise.”

Who would deem it possible that you could refresh my soul out doors on a mid-November morning in Bend?

Fresh, light rain had kissed the earth, washing away the remnants of yesterdays snow and dust. The earth was drinking it in, just as my soul was drinking in of your mercies which touch my soul like the rain.

The wind was blowing strong, forewarning of a storm to come, but there was such strength and majesty in that breeze….a promise that you are there, in the storm.

Clouds scurried across the sky at your command, hurrying to make way for the arrival of the sun. It was though you had orchestrated another glorious sunrise for an audience of one. As though you were reminding me….there are many more to come.

Light filtered through the towering pines, such glory! A prayer filled my heart, “May your light shine through me oh God, that others might see the awesome design of your Spirit.”

And finally….there was my precious little flower patch, and in amazement I saw there were still blooms in the midst of November. A promise from you Lord, that in even in the coldest seasons, the life which is born of you never withers or fades. As I abide in you, no matter the season, you bring life and laughter and love….always.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Guilty Wanderers

This is the twenty-second in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

November 16, 2009

Psalm 107 strikes deep within my soul. Wanderers....rebellious fools...wilfull sinners....world travelers in the pursuit of business….what an unlikely lot. Guilty all in their own ways. United by a common thread in this Psalm….they all cried out to you and you delivered them. Why? Because of your steadfast love.

I too Lord have wandered in rebellion, willfully pursing sin and chasing the ways of the world. But Jesus!

Oh Lord, where would I be had you not reached down in your great love and drawn me in at an early age. You have been faithful these many years, even when my faith has faltered.

I praise you, my Lord. I thank you my God. Your steadfast love endures forever.

“Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever! Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man! For he satisfies the longing soul, and the hungry soul he fills with good things.”

Monday, June 21, 2010

If It Costs Me Everything

This is the twenty-first in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

November 15, 2009

“I’ll obey and serve you. I’ll obey because I love you. I’ll obey, my life is in your hands. This is the way to prove my love when feelings go astray. If it costs me everything, I’ll obey.”

Words so easy to sing Lord, when my idea of “everything” is my earthly possessions, my position, my place. Somehow, before this morning, it never occurred to me that everything means even my very life. You caught me unawares this morning, questioning me so directly. If my obedience was meant to bring death, not life (in this world), would I still obey?

Oh God….that touches something deep in my soul…it is a struggle for my will. At its base….you are asking me….do I love you more than life itself? To answer that question is to answer both, for if I love you more than anything, even my life, then I will obey you in all things, though it might mean death.

My thoughts are in turmoil, working to understand the challenge you present. Like Peter, I know my heart and you know it as well. Am I one who “loves not my life unto death?” I see you Lord. I understand that you were “obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”

How can I ask for any less or more? I only ask that you plainly let me know your command, your will, that I might obey and follow you, Lord. Teach me your ways, may I be a sheep who knows your voice and will follow, unconditionally, wherever you lead.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

If It Is You

This is the twentieth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

“Lord, if it is you…command me to come.”

Who but Jesus could have come, walking on the water? Yet Peter needed the reassurance, “Lord, IF it is you, command me”.

You didn’t chide. You didn’t ignore. You didn’t walk away. You simply met Peter at the place of his faith and you said, “Come”.

I am as Peter, Lord. Four weeks ago the storm began to rage, fear filled my heart. Three weeks ago you came, as I peered out into the darkness of the unknown, anxious only to be safely on the shore. “Calm the storm”, was my prayer. Rescue me, as you have done so many times before. But not this time, not yet. As I cried out to you… seeking your comfort…. seeking only to be with you, you led me to know you were out on the water. Would I recognize you in the storm?

“Wait!” This was you’re a command. “Give me room to work,” was your admonition.


For Peter to obey was to step out….for me, to obey, is to step back. For both of us, the storm still rages….all that holds us is having our eyes fixed on you. Oh Lord, when I am tempted to look around, when I am tempted to ask you to silence the wind and waves…when I am tempted to ask again if it is really you, let me hear your voice, let me fix my gaze upon you.

Draw me Lord, may my desire for you be greater than my fear of all that surrounds me.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

In The Shelter of Your Mercy

This is the nineteenth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

November 11, 2009

It is in the shelter of your mercy and compassion I rest this morning Lord. It is to your heart of love that knows first hand the effects of sin and sickness, I run. Like the woman who reached out in desperation to touch the hem of your robe…I too come seeking your touch….asking for your healing….hoping that some might see and see your glory…yet realizing it is simply your great mercy and grace I really long for.

You wept, you sighed, you groaned when you encountered all that the evil one had brought upon this world due to our rebellion. Did your heart hurt for us? Was not this the reason you came, to heal…to give sight…to make the lame to walk…the deaf to hear…to release the prisoners from their chains? If no one believed as they witnessed your works of compassion, would you not have still healed because of your great love?

You alone hold life and death in your hands. You choose both for your purpose, for ways I do not understand.

Hear my plea, oh Lord, grant life, give healing, not necessarily that others might see and be changed, but that I might spend the rest of my earthly days marveling at your heart that cries and weeps, that sighs and groans like mine. That I might fully come to know you as my great high priest, who is touched by all the touches me….touch me oh God.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

God is My Salvation

This is the eighteenth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

November 7, 2009

“Behold, God is my Salvation; I will trust and will not be afraid; for the Lord God is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation." Isaiah 12:2

I get this so reversed, Lord. I find myself afraid and try to convince myself to trust in you. You tell me to first see you – You ARE my salvation – therefore in YOU I can trust! Because of YOU, I do not have to fear. The circumstances may be grim, there may be giants in the land – but often it is not for me to know this, in mercy you cover my eyes – I am simply to trust in you. You will accomplish all you have purposed to do.

Keep me from dwelling upon the unseen giants, oh God. You are my hope and my salvation, my life's song. Indeed, whom shall I fear! Of whom shall I be afraid, for you are God and there is none like unto you.

Monday, May 10, 2010

An Eternal Perspective

This is the seventeenth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

November 6, 2009

“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.”

How this has triggered something in my heart, Lord. Each day, whether I know it or not, from the moment I was born….my outer self…this body…began to waste away. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. And yet, that very process points to the truth; the longer I live, the weaker this body becomes while at the same time my inner man is becoming stronger and stronger. It is a parallel I never understood.

When I am weak, He is strong. When my flesh fails, God prevails. “I must decrease, that he might increase!”

Oh Lord, give me an eternal perspective.

Monday, April 26, 2010


This is the sixteenth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. See initial blog post on February 21, 2010.

November 5, 2009

John Day, Oregon

A glorious sunrise this morning and a glorious whisper in my heart. The wind is blowing, both within and without, “You will see many more sunrises.”

Because of who I am, I am tempted to ask how many, but the amazingly warm November wind brushes across my face and I hear your word, “That is for me to know. You simply enjoy and cherish the knowledge I am giving you that is another beginning, not an end. Cherish each sunrise as my promise to you.”

With eager heart I open the Psalms for your word to me for this day. How could I have missed so many sunrises in the years so swiftly passed? Why have I not risen early to feel the soft touch of your Spirit blowing across my soul, with expectant face touched by your caress, with ears eager to hear what you would say? Regrets, not so much for what I didn’t learn but for what I didn’t hear, enjoy, receive as words from your heart to mine.

And now, “Forgetting those things which lie behind….I Press On.”

Oh sing to the Lord a new song.
Sing to the Lord all the earth.
Sing to the Lord, bless his name;
Tell of his salvation from day to day.
Declare his glory among the nations,
His marvelous works among all the people!
Splendor and majesty are before him;
Strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.

This is my heart’s desire Lord, to sing a new song to you, the song of a new day, to the one who reigns over all the earth. Oh that I might bless your name and tell of your salvation for many days to come. Do not remove me from this place Lord, this season of seeing you in your splendor and majesty; of sitting in your sanctuary where I behold your strength and beauty.

Do not remove me….until my heart is so changed that when the imminent threat of physical pain and suffering, even death, has passed….I will still crave the morning with you, that my soul will remain hungry for you, that there will be an emptiness, a longing, a knowing it is from you I must hear, upon you I must gaze, at your feet I must sit. Then, and only then do I ask for your hand to be stayed….for you to remove this affliction.

This is the offering I bring. I come into your courts to worship you and you alone…in the splendor of your holiness…upon this, another new day…which holds the promise of many more to come.

Monday, April 19, 2010

The Fire of Your Spirit

This is the fifteenth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

November 3, 2009

With a touch of the switch I can bring forth fire to warm my flesh this cool November morning. In like manner, when I choose to leave, to get on with my day, it is within my power to turn it off again. I am in control. And in that still small voice I have come to recognize as your own, you cause me to stop and ponder… do I try and do the same with the fire of your Spirit?

Oh Lord, cleanse my heart, complete your work in me, burn away all that you have revealed during this season. Such pride and selfishness…. consume it by your flame O Spirit. Do not cease, do not let me walk away until you have fulfilled your purpose.

I read your Word and I am reminded of David, how he desired to bring in the ark. Was it for himself, as a prize, a trophy? How often have I treated you the same? Did David understand your presence was ever with him, that he did not need the ark to have you near?

How like David I am. “Let me God, let me show, let me do! I have grand ideas of how I might best display you!”

Then you respond, as you did with David, “I am God of all….I do not dwell in a house made by hands….O David, that is but a token of my presence with you. Do not work to build for me that which I do not require, rather let me search your heart and give to you and eternal kingdom!”

When Moses encountered the fire of God, he was set upon a path that would transform his life. When Elijah called down fire from heaven, he would soon find it is in the still small voice you are heard. When the fire of your spirit birthed your bride on Pentecost, the world would witness a new era unlike any ever seen, all according to your magnificent plan. The people you touched by fire saw you in a new light…they beheld you as the great “I AM”….the One who always has a remnant who are faithful, the One who sustains us, the One who gives power, the One who has chosen to dwell within us.

Burn, fire, burn, cleanse this aching heart. May I be forever changed, as I have come face to face with the Spirit of the living God….to the fire that cannot be quenched. Give me strength to stand firm in your presence, O God.

Monday, April 12, 2010

If The Lord Had Not Been My Help

This is the fourteenth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

November 2, 2009

I confess, I needed to hear a word of encouragement from you…so I jumped ahead to read your word for me from tomorrow’s Psalm, the 94th. Once again, you did not fail me.

“If the Lord had not been my help my soul would soon have lived in the land of silence.” You, O Lord, are the only one who truly understands. You know the word you have given, instructing me to wait. You alone know the fear that waiting can bring.

I cannot continue to talk about it, even to those who are closest. Indeed, if you were not my help, I must needs dwell in silence. But you are there, you are listening, you are my help. I would feel my stride slip, my foot falter, but for you O Lord.

“When the cares of my heart are many, your consolations cheer my soul.”

You see the cares of my heart tonight, indeed they are many. Care for what I cannot know at this time. Console me O Lord, be my stronghold and my God, the rock of my refuge. Hide me Lord-in the cleft of the rock-in the palm of your hand. Cover my ears and my eyes that I might hear and see you only. May I know your touch and desire your fragrance.

O Lord, in you I trust, may I not be ashamed.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

By Your Spirit

This is the thirteenth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

November 1, 2009

John was first “introduced” to Jesus when Mary visited Elizabeth. Scripture records that “the Babe leapt for joy". Matthew tells us that when Jesus came to the Jordan to be baptized, John would have prevented him, saying “ I need to be baptized by you.” He KNEW Jesus…knew who He was….knew the story surrounding His birth…knew He was righteous.

Why then, in John, does he say, “I myself did not know Him, but for this purpose I came baptizing with water, that He might be revealed in Israel….He who sent me to baptize with water said to me ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.”

I have puzzled over that seeming contradiction for years, but I believe you are answering it here, even now, as it applies to what you are doing in my life.

John was but a man. All his life, I think, he probably thought Jesus was who his mother and father and cousin proclaimed Him to be. But, like me, John was still flesh and blood, prone to seeing “through a glass dimly”. It would take the work of the Spirit to fully reveal to him that “this is whom you know Him to be”. When John might question his own discernment, (as he would some time later) God simply told him, “I will give you a sign, the one on whom the Spirit descends and remains is He.”

It is always the Spirit who reveals Jesus. It is always the Spirit who reveals the deep things of God.

I think you have worked a work in this body, Lord, but I do not trust my own judgment. I will watch and see if you confirm this by your Spirit. And if you ask, I will boldly proclaim it. Or, if you ask... like Mary... I will store up, I will treasure, I will continue to ponder all these things in my heart until you choose to reveal your glory.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Knowing So Little

This is the twelfth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

November 1, 2009

“And after this…Job lived.”

In no way to I compare what has come upon me to the immensity of what you brought upon Job, and yet, as you have directed me tonight to read his story, I see such similarity in how we view you.

Job knew all about you. His words declare who you are, the truth of what you do. Yet Job did not really know you, in all your awesome majesty. It took illness and devastation to open his eyes to you. I understand, for I am like Job, thinking I know yet knowing so little.

Oh that you would open my eyes to your majesty and omnipotence. Oh that like Job, once I have seen, once you have completed the work you alone have begun….oh that you would grant me many more days to see my children and grandchildren, that I might rejoice as they grow in their love for you.

Nevertheless, not my will but yours be done.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

59 Days

This is the eleventh in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

October 31, 2009

I feel compelled to record this O Lord. I am but flesh, prone to wanting my own desires, and yet….almost asleep this afternoon…a deep intake of breath…like breathing in your Holy Spirit…and something stirred in my soul. Did you touch and heal me Lord? I hear so imperfectly, yet hope has stirred in my heart. My trust, my only hope is in you, O God…but you know it is my cry to be healed…to show forth your glory…to declare praise unto your name.

59 days until we confirm. 59, so you place on my heart to begin reading the last 59 Psalms. Psalm 92 was today’s starting point, “It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to your name, O most High.”

That I will do, praising you for who you are, knowing you can and wondering if you have already performed a mighty work of healing. Verse 10 stirs my heart. You have poured over me fresh oil…the Holy Spirit…healing oil…fresh wind. Have my eyes seen the downfall of my enemy, the sickness with which Satan would afflict me?

The righteous flourish – they are planted in the house of the Lord. They shall bear fruit in old age. They are ever full of sap and green, to declare that the Lord is upright. He is my rock!

O Lord may it be so. May this be the appointed day when you have already granted me to go forth bearing fruit for many years to come.

Friday, March 26, 2010

The Greatest Need

I wonder if they were disappointed at His response. They had gone to such great lengths to bring their friend to Him. Pushing through the crowd, they had scaled the walls, they had climbed to the top of the roof and with great purpose they had begun digging through the thatch, ignoring the shouts and the jeers of those who stood nearby.

They had but one aim. To bring their sick friend to Jesus that he might be healed. They knew, they had heard the stories, they had witnessed it from afar, but tonight they wanted the miracle for the one who was so dear to them. He had been sick for so long, his limbs paralyzed and useless. Most had abandoned him, but not them, not these four. They had stayed by his side and now they were bringing him to Jesus.

Such anticipation, such hope must have been theirs as they lowered the crude looking litter into the crowded room. No words were required, no request was shared, for it was plain to all that this man’s greatest need was to be healed. It had happened elsewhere, they knew. Now they wondered, would they bear witness to such a miracle here today?
Breathlessly they waited in the silence as Jesus drew near.

Then He spoke. Looking first to the four and then directly at their paralyzed friend, Jesus proclaimed with authority, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”

What must they have thought? “His sins, forgiven? That was it?” They had come with such faith. “What about his withered legs, his crippled feet? Couldn’t Jesus see there was a pressing need for his body to be made whole? What good was it to forgive a man his trespasses if his body was still weak and lame? “

We know the end of the story, so it is easy to chide them. But I wonder, had I been one of the four would I have been disappointed that day if Jesus had stopped then and walked away. If “all” He did was forgive this man’s sin, would I have asked for more?

Jesus knew their hearts, just as He knows mine. He knows that so often my focus is still here, on that which I can see, and feel, what I can touch and hold near. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. He feels our infirmities as we make our way through this fallen world. He has promised that although in this life we will have great trouble, we can rejoice, for He has overcome the world.

To prove it, that day, He turned to the man whose greatest need had already been met and spoke those words which would provide the healing he had come in search of. “Rise, pick up your bed, and go home”.

“And the man rose and immediately packed up his bed and went out, before them all, so that they were all amazed and glorified God.” But the story did not end there. For I think if you had peered through the door of his Judean home that night, you would have seen one who could not stop walking to and fro. Maybe he was making sure the healing was real, but I suspect he was just practicing for the day when he would run and skip on the hills of heaven. No wonder!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Waiting for the Lord

This is the tenth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

Oct 30, 2010


I awoke with fear this morning Father…fear from a dream with no basis in fact…but it caused distress none the less. It was fragemented...a doctor, a callus comment, the thought there is more going on than meets the eye.

The fear was palpitating…until I realized there was also a song on my lips, swelling from my heart, “There is a redeemer, Jesus God’s own Son”. And I knew, even in the depths of sleep, you have given me a song in the night.

Then I open your word this morning to Psalm 130. “I wait for the Lord, my soul waits and in His word I hope; my soul waits for the Lord, more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning.”

With you there is forgiveness….that I might live forever.


A great storm has passed over my soul. A storm of fear and sorrow, conjured up by my own musings. I have let my eyes drift to those around me, to receive their encouragement and words of admiration, rather than fixing my gaze firmly upon you.

The storm rages, but you call to me…sweetly and tenderly… compelling me to come, to kneel at the feet of the One who has loved me forever! I am not sure if the waves and the wind have ceased, but I know you are walking on the water, carrying me upon your shoulders. And above all, I know I am secure.

I am reminded of what James wrote, “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives generously to all without reproach and it will be given him, let him ask in faith without doubting….”

I come, Lord, I have asked for wisdom and you have given it. “Wait,” is what you have spoken. You desire obedience more than sacrifice. Such irony, I am willing to “sacrifice” my very body to the surgeon’s knife, choosing that trial to go through, yet you are calling me to obedience, to waiting, something I am finding to be much more difficult.

How you know my heart Lord, for your desire is to change me and to make me into one who will wait on you. I can see it clearly now. This is not about the outcome, but the process.

Oh that the testing of my faith (the ability to wait and do absolutely nothing!) may produce steadfastness in my life. Continue your work of completing me, Lord, I willing lay my life at your feet.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Keep Me Close

This is the ninth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

October 28, 2009

“Whatareyoudoing?” Somehow when my little grandson Zach says those words, all run together, it brings a smile to my face. For he is asking, gently, out of curiosity. I am sure he has heard it often, from the lips of his mama, in a slightly different vein, “ZACH…What are you Doing??"

You have to know, Zach is an adventurous, busy little fellow who could be up to most anything. Think Curious George. Most likely, he has found himself doing something he probably shouldn’t have.

This morning I come to you as a child, Father. Like Zach, I look to you and ask, gently, “What are you doing?” Not so much that I might correct you but that I might know you are there and have a purpose for what you are doing in my life. Like Zach, I just seek to know and be comforted in the knowledge that you are near and are watching out for me.

Yet I would be remiss not to hear your voice as well Father, that probing voice which says to me, “Robyn, what are YOU doing?” For Lord, my heart is prone to wander, to lose sight of you, to find myself caught up in places I ought not go. Foyers of fear, rooms of resistance, streets of self-will all beckon me.

I know I need to stay close to you, to be where I can see your face and hear your voice. Here’s my heart Lord, I give it to you. Keep me close, hem me in, assign my portion. May I look up and see Jesus only.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Poured Out

This is the eighth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

October 25, 2009
Alone yet surrounded by your presence.

Such precious time with you, Lord, by the fire, but warmed by the great love you have poured out for me. I understand Mary desiring to bless you, to touch you, to give of that which was most precious to her. I desire to do no less, O Lord, though that which is most precious is life itself. I am afraid, yet I know I can trust you. My life is secure in your hands, strong hands which were pierced for me that I might not fear.

I see so much of me still in me O God. Why oh why does it always come back to me? You are my strength, yet I boast in strength – somehow thinking I should be admired for what is not mine. Forgive me, Lord. “To God alone be the glory…to God alone be the praise!” Cleanse my heart, O God- break the hold of pride in my life.

How can I share, how can I stand strong without allowing my own heart to be puffed up in my sharing and strength? This is what you are calling me to, yet I am so acutely aware of how it draws attention to me. Forgive me, root out the pride within.

May I so see you that I cannot see me. May others see you and not me. Humble me Lord, may I be weak that you might be strong. I do not seek to be lifted up. Such struggle and turmoil in my soul, O God, I can do naught else but dwell face down at your feet.

Morning has broken.
A long night of being alone with you Lord, yet you have spoken to my heart.
You have brought peace as only you can.

October 26, 2009

Had you stepped outside early this morning you would have felt it. The wind was blowing. That in it’s self is not so unusual here in the high desert, but this morning was a rare gift, for it is mid-October yet the morning was warm and beckoning. I could not resist. Quickly I grabbed my cup of coffee and slipped outside to watch the majesty of God’s colors unfold in the rising sun, even as the breeze danced through the tops of the towering pines.

As I was touched by it’s force and embraced by it’s urgent whisper, I was reminded of how Jesus likened the Holy Spirit to the wind, blowing where it will at God’s direction. We feel His touch and hear the sound of His voice, without always realizing from whence it has come. Yet it is that same Spirit which indwells each child of God, blowing in and through us…picking up the fragrance of our heart… allowing the world around us to catch the sweet savor of God emanating from our lives.

How I have longed for that sweet fragrance to be what flows from my life. Yet I am reminded that it only comes in one way. Mary understood this. Just days prior, she had caught a glimpse of eternity, as Jesus had called forth her brother Lazarus from the grave. Life triumphed where death once ruled, but the ultimate victory would only come at a great price.

Jesus had now come to their home at the start of that final week. In just a few short days, all history would climax around the Son of God who willingly became the sacrificial Lamb of God. In adoration and love Mary brought that which was to her, most precious. Sorrow mixed with joy as she knelt at the feet of Jesus, breaking open the alabaster jar she had brought with her for this very purpose. Tenderly she anointed his feet with the oil that spilled forth from the broken vessel. In love she ministered to her Lord, the unmistakable sweet aroma of what she had given to Jesus filling the room.

How I desire that my life might put forth that same fragrance; that the wind of the Spirit might carry it to those who are in need of refreshing. How I desire it, yet how I tremble at the cost. I look for an easy way that I might avoid the breaking. I ask God to release a sweet fragrance even as I remain whole. It cannot be. It is in the breaking process that I find myself at the feet of Jesus. As I minister to Him, others are touched by the overflow of what has been given and is now given back to my Lord and Savior. There is no other way.

And so like Mary, I turn my focus to the One whose body was broken for me. I kneel before the One whose blood was spilled out that I might be saved. I see Him as the one who gave all for me and I know, I can offer no less. And through my tears, I feel the wind begin to blow…..

Friday, March 12, 2010

Enamored By Your Glory

This is the seventh in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

October 25, 2009
Suttle Lake

Why did Lazarus have to die? For the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified. I thought I always understood that. People would see the miracle and God would get the glory. That is correct, in part, but I believe you are showing me there is more, Lord.

If Lazarus had not died, Martha would not have confronted you with her fears and frustration. Oh, she “got it” just like I. There is a resurrection, of course. Lazarus would rise, “someday”, but today, death was very present, very frightening, very final. Jesus was a wonderful, amazing friend, but he had not intervened. Why, Why, WHY?

That God might be glorified. That Martha’s greatest fear, that my greatest need might be clearly set aside. Life and death are in the hand of God, in the simple command of Jesus.

That IS the glory of God. That He IS God and nothing, absolutely nothing, is beyond His command. Winds are stilled, waves calmed, bodies made whole, lives redeemed….death swallowed up by life.

“The Word became flesh and dwelt among us – and we beheld his glory”. John 1:14

Why can I trust you, my Lord? Why does my heart now long at times to just be with you…forever? Because I am beginning to behold your glory – full of grace and truth – and I am in awe. When I behold you, I am without words. I simply stand in your presence, drowning in your love, overcome by your mercy, enamored by your glory!

Monday, March 8, 2010

In You Alone

This is the sixth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

October 23rd and 24th

Suttle Lake Retreat with the Women of TFAB

“To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul, O my God, in you I trust. Let me not be put to shame, let not my enemies exalt over me. Make me to know your ways, O Lord, teach me your paths. Lead me in your truths and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation, for you I will wait all day long.” Psalm 75

This is my prayer, O God, for this week-end retreat and for the days and weeks and months which shall unfold. I lift up my soul to you, although sometimes, as I am so keenly aware, it is had to get my eyes off myself and back upon you. This I know, in you I trust…let me not be put to shame…even more…let me not bring shame upon your name, Jesus, my precious Savior.

“In you alone is where I find my comfort, in you alone is my security, in you alone is where I find my shelter…only in you alone.” May I find firm footing when I stand only upon you. When I am weak Lord, as I know I will be, I pray you will be my strength. When asked of the hope that is within me, may I be quick to declare your glory.

In this season Lord, more than I have ever known, make me to know your ways. Show me your paths that I may skip along them, as a hind in high places. Lead me in your truth - may your truth be upon my lips and heart – may I speak of naught but what you are showing me.

You are the God of my salvation. Such hope is mine. May each new day bring new desire to simply wait upon you.

You have created me to praise you, O God. In that I find my greatest joy. Such glory I found in your presence in worship this morning, oh that I might have remained there forever! Eternity's beauty pierced my heart, how I long to be in that place forever with you.

And yet…I desire to be here. To share of what you are dong in me, to somehow communicate your great love and tender mercy. Tonight Lord, I will attempt to share something of that with these precious women. Give me words to speak, not of my own, but of your Spirit. May my words speak only of you, Jesus, you and you alone.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Swallowed Up By Life

This is the fifth in a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

October 20, 2009

2nd Corinthians 5:4-5

That is it exactly!! Listen…

“For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened –not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.”

This is what you are working in my heart Lord. It is not so much that I would chose to be unclothed; that is, anxious to shed this earthly tent that has served me well these many years. Rather it is that I look forward to being “fully clothed; that is, in my heavenly body, my heavenly home, my dwelling with you.

I am not afraid-yes perhaps I even long for that day when this mortal body must die that it might be swallowed up by life, your life, oh God, eternal life!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

You Know My Days

This is the fourth of a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

October 20, 2009

Today is my son’s birthday.

For him, for me, as for all is Psalm 139,

“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made…..

In your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet, there were none of them.”

Such safety in your hand, Oh Lord, such confidence and trust.

“You hem me in, behind and before and lay your hand upon me.”

The longer I know you the more “hemming in” I desire Lord.

Keep your hand upon me, lead me in the way of righteousness and truth.

Accomplish your will in my life.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Trust Me

This is the third of a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

October 19, 2009
On the Crooked River

“Speak Lord, for your servant listens.”

I know I hear and see in part, Lord, but still I listen and watch. You have opened a window of sunshine in an otherwise dreary land on this fall day. I see it as a blessing from your hand for me, reminding me that your eye is upon me.

You are speaking, and so I will write what I am hearing from your Spirit this day, “This sickness is not unto death.” And yet even in my writing I know that Lazarus died. But I also know as he was raised from the tomb, he went forth, never again to fear his passing from this life into eternity. Death was no longer an enemy to be feared but a journey to be anticipated.

I do not know your plans for me; I can only see what you have placed in front of me this day. But your Spirit whispers, “This, this is that which you have desired for so long…to be set free from the fear of sickness and even death itself, for you and your children and your grandchildren. I am going to do a mighty work in you my child. You will see with new eyes and feel with a new heart. Trust will be your constant companion, mercy and steadfast love your portion!

At last you will be freed from that which would cause your eyes and heart to turn at times from me. This is the time I have appointed for you! Do not fear those who can harm the body, but fear the one who can destroy men’s souls. May that fear give you renewed compassion for those who still tremble. Share with them of my great love and compassion, now that you are truly catching a glimpse of all my salvation means in light of eternity.

Life here is but a vapor, yet it is that which you and others grasp. Lift up your eyes and see me in my majesty and glory. Do not fear this time, but rather welcome and embrace it as my good gift to you, for I have loved you with an everlasting love and I will accomplish all I have purposed to do in your life.

I know you fear, but as I spoke to you so many years ago, “Trust Me”. All the prayers you have whispered have not gone unheeded, all your struggles not unseen, I am about to do a work that, if I had told you before, you would not have believed. This is the time, this is the day, rejoice and see my hand at work.”

I do trust you Lord…help me to trust you more. May I be as a vessel of clay in your hands, willingly embracing the Master’s Touch.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Do You Want to Be Healed?

This is the second of a series of journal entries begun in October, 2009. Please see initial post on February 21, 2010.

October 17, 2009

“Do you want to be healed?”

You posed the question to the lame man at the pool of Bethesda, now you pose it to me, Jesus. My reason for hesitation is surely different than his, but my initial response is the same. The lame man assumes healing must come from the physical labor of man, someone to move him into the pool. How foolish, I have often thought, and yet, I search with fingers flying on the keyboard to find the answers of how I might be healed. How foolish!!

You are the great physician, Jesus. By your stripes I am healed. This physical body will one day rise anew, sickness and death dispelled. But for now, for tonight, it would seem you are posing the question to me, “Do you want to be healed?”

My response surprises even me. I do not want to be like this man who was physically healed only to not realize who Jesus is. If my being made whole causes me to lose touch with you, Jesus, then my answer would be no. In my lameness, my blindness, my spiritual paralysis, I have not always recognized you for who you are. These past few months have opened my eyes to you; I have seen you, high and lifted up. I have caught a glimpse of your glory! Rather than longing for what is passed, I look ahead to what is…an eternity with you!

But I do desire to be healed, if that will lead me to sharing of your glory, delighting in your love, declaring the awesome wonder of you. I do not want to go back to what was, a life lived in mundaneness. I have been content to dwell at the pool amid the lame and the blind, looking for one to help me rather than looking to how I might help those around me. Oh that I might be the one to offer sincere love to others!

What joy yesterday to have my time “interrupted” by my son, to be content to enjoy an hour of conversation with him, though there was much to do. To go to my daughter’s home today and sit on the porch, enjoying the beauty of a blustery fall afternoon as I took in the wonder of my grandson, marveling at the beautiful simplicity of being a child. It is for these, my children and grandchildren that I want to be healed, that I might share of your great love and mercy with them.

From surface conversation to heartfelt prayer, Thursday evening dinner with good friends took on a new dimension as they were the first to share in the news I received. My heart now is linked with theirs, for we have journeyed together through the valley of the shadow. I am truly feeling sheer joy and pain and delight in the journey. This is the gift you have given in my infirmity of the past few months.

And now, a potentially bigger challenge is in my path. I do not know the outcome, but if indeed this is your Spirit asking me tonight, “Do you want to be healed?” I respond with reverent fear, “Yes…heal my body as you have already healed my soul. Make me a servant of your people, may the days allotted to me have purpose in you.”

Merciful Father, may I have length of days to show mercy to others.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

A Great God

In October of 2009 the Lord set my feet upon a path of fear and faith, testing and trusting. It is a journey that has found me falling, time and time again, at the feet of of the one who gave His life for me. In it all I have come to realize that God answers the cry of my heart not because I have great faith, but because He is a Great God.

Some who read this blog may understand fully of what I write, for you too are in the midst of a difficult trial. For you, it is my prayer that as I share a part of that journey, as recorded in my journals through that season, that God might use a small part of what He has worked in my life to encourage you on your path.

October 16, 2009

And so the journey begins….a word from our friend, my doctor, yesterday…a word I really did not want to hear. “The nodule has grown”.

To be human is to hear those words and to fear. “What if?” echoes in my mind. I hear and I think, my days may have limit…and yet as a mortal…one who must put off this earthy tent…I understand my days have been appointed by the Lord.

I do not know how this will unfold. Is this it, the final preparation for a glorious journey I fear yet long for? Or is this a time to simply be transformed from glory to greater glory as I see you anew, oh God. Is this your way of answering all I have prayed through the years…the yearning desire to know you more? I do not know, but I know Who I know.

My prayer is that of David in Psalm 16, that beautiful Psalm which you directed me to in that precious midnight hour just past.

Preserve me, O God, for in you I take refuge….
The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup,

you hold my lot.
The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places,
indeed I have a beautiful inheritance.
I bless the Lord who gives me counsel,
in the night also my heart instructs me.
I have set the Lord always before me;
because he is at my right hand I shall not be shaken.
Therefore my heart is glad and my whole being rejoices:
my flesh also dwells secure.
For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol,
or let your holy one see corruption.
You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore."

You are my inheritance…you hold my lot. In you oh Lord I place my trust.