Monday, April 27, 2015

ONE STEP AT A TIME



I was feeling a bit unaccomplished the other day as I thought about all of my women friends and relatives who have wonderful well paying "careers". I screwed up the side of my lip, looked down at the ground, and kicked my shoe against the floor. Am I where I'm suppose to be? I ask this quite often of the Lord, waiting and expecting a response. I want to head in the direction He has planned, but sometimes I cannot hear him, or I do not listen, I'm not sure which it is somedays. I know He knows everything about our lives from the beginning to the end, but He does not tell us the final destination,. We must find it one step at a time. Psalm 37:23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord, and He delights in his way.   Proverbs 16:9  A man's heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.  God's path is full of abundance. When you ask him for direction in your life, he gives it, but usually just a bit at a time. So when the Holy Spirit speaks to us in a still small voice we must listen intently, and with an open heart.  Isaiah 30:21  Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, "This is the way, walk in it," whenever you turn to the right hand or whenever you turn to the left.  When I prayed a while ago for the Lord to give me the next "step" in life, I heard my heart speak. Below is what I heard. Make things to remind people about all of the small blessings in life. Remind them the moments you take for granted can become precious memories later on. I know to some this may seem silly when the world is all about climbing the corporate ladder, making more money, and having tons of "LinkedIn" friends, but there you have it. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with making money. I pray my items will sell. Everyone has and needs a purpose in life, and to be fruitful in it. The Lord gifted me with a small amount of creativity, so He said use it and bless others with it. I am taking one small step in that direction as I constantly try to walk in His way all the days I have left.








In this moment time stands still.

    The beauty is in the details remembered. It’s your first golf trip to St. Andrews, Scotland. You’ll never forget the smell of the course.  With the gorse in full bloom, the small yellow flowers emit a smell of coconut reminiscent of summer lotions. And over the sound of gentle waves rolling onto a sandy shoreline you hear the distant bagpipes playing Amazing Grace. It’s a perfect setting for the country where golf began.
    Golf is a game of honor, integrity and rules; albeit some peculiar rules. Rules for the most part, which are left to the individuals to police themselves. This begs the question: if you cheat at golf are you only cheating yourself?  Golf began as a gentlemen’s game, and it remains a gentlemen’s game. The honor is in playing as the “rules” intended, so if you quietly move your ball, or don’t play to your potential, then it says far more about your ethics then your golf score. I’d like to think the Lord would love a good game of golf, played hard with honesty, and fairness.
    Now it’s on to Royal Troon for more great golf, but no haggis. That will be kept for someone far more abdominally brave.

    Enjoy the view, the sights, and the sounds, especially the hollow clunk of the ball as it drops into the cup echoing a birdie on the eighteenth hole!








In this moment time stands still.

            I sit patiently looking up at you while you take in the sounds of summer, the birds chirping in the trees, the warm summer breeze whispering past your face. You look content.
            Our walk is an established routine, especially when the weather is nice. I wait by the door looking longingly up at the leash. After a specified time I bark, sometimes incessantly, until the leash is attached to my collar. Then we’re off to the park.
            If you don’t have a park nearby, a walk through the neighborhood can be just as delightful. The hometown streets, where trees border the sidewalks like sentinels, are a joy. They can evoke childhood memories of trick or treat, or caroling in the snow, or simply walking to grandmas house, if you are or were blessed enough to have them live nearby.
            Ah, the joys of summer are never ceasing if you take a moment to be still…and listen…and watch…and smell. They are all around you from the birds in the trees, to dogs being walked, to the smell of fresh cut grass. When you stop and look around, blessings abound.
            James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows”.     The Lord is Creator of all things. I believe he wishes us to be appreciative of, and enjoy it. However, we must be willing to hold on to our blessings with open hands lifted upwards, so when or if one is taken away, we can still lift our voices in thanks even as the caged bird sings.







In this moment time stands still.

It’s your day. A day to spend with a sister, a friend or just yourself, and watch the world go by as you sip some coffee or tea, and eat a croissant. It’s one of those few days you get when you can just relax and imagine the possibilities of life. A moment to reflect on all of the absurdities the world hands out; yet see the beautiful possibilities, too. For instance you discuss getting a typewriter and writing the next great American novel, or you debate the pros and cons of starting your own business? Ah, the potential and promises life can hold.  You take another sip of warm creamy goodness and close your eyes for a moment. When you open them you smile, and count your blessings. Maybe the novel will have to wait, and any business prospects will have to be put on the back burner for now. But the beauty of life is it’s full of blessings from the Lord. In every single day, in every single place, in every moment the Lord shows His love for us. So, even though the great American novel may be left for the next person, you are still able to sit with a loved one, sip tea and sweetly laugh as you watch the world go by. And in that moment blessings are counted, and dreams are made.

Monday, April 13, 2015

I posted this a couple of years ago, but thought it was worth a second showing. Enjoy.

 Without the benefit of science even Job, 4,000 years ago, could understand the nature of the universe and believe in what he could not see.

“He stretches out the north over empty space;
 He hangs the earth on nothing.”



“He drew a circular horizon on the face of the waters,
At the boundary of light and darkness.”





       Without any disrespect to Stephen Hawking , a theoretical physicist and cosmologist, I must beg to disagree with his statement (on creation and God),  "Yet the latest advances in cosmology explain why the laws of the universe seem tailor-made for humans, without the need for a benevolent creator".  Or how about this one,  "There is no heaven. That is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark."   How sad. This could be no further from the real truth than the end of space itself. How inexplicable that people of such great knowledge and intellect could be so blind to the greatest scientist who has ever existed, God himself. 
         Our blue planet spins on its axis at 1,000 miles per hour as it orbits around the sun supported by some "mysterious" unseen thing called gravity. Even the tale of how a primordial universe of hydrogen, helium and lithium adapted itself to being able to harbor human life is full of "coincidences". Hawking said, "The emergence of the complex structures capable of supporting intelligent observers seems to be very fragile. The laws of nature form a system that is extremely fine-tuned.  Such calculations show that a change of as little as 0.5% in the strength of the strong nuclear force, or 4% in the electric force, would destroy either nearly all carbon or all oxygen in every star, and hence the possibility of life as we know it. It raises the natural question of why it is that way."  It seems he should be able to see the truth with authority, but nay nay, he does not. He says, "It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going."  You would think the answer would be as visible as a large comet hitting earth to a man with his brainpower and reasoning. But still, scientists like himself are convinced that everything that exists and is formed is because the laws of the universe make it so. The question I would postulate is, who made the laws in the first place? Seriously, we could argue to infinity and beyond with theorists about destabilizing atoms, or the universes inhomogeneities, or even the space time continuum theory till we are blue in the face, but where we would arrive?  Back in the same primordial quagmire I would assume. Why can't they see the empirical nature of science does not preclude the revelatory nature of faith?  I am no Stephen Hawking. I have, I'm certain, a much much much lower IQ than any scientist worth his weight in gold. But what I do possess is a brain and a heart that allows me the breadth to see beyond the incontrovertible scientific evidence. I can see the universe as it truly is...a magnificent creation of the one almighty God/scientist who by his hands the LAWS of the universe were put into motion. Indeed, the images from space bespeak only a whisper of his thunderous power and love. Just like Job, you too can see for yourselves the true creator of the universe by opening your heart, and allowing the truth to spill in. 







Job 26: 5-14

“The dead tremble,
Those under the waters and those inhabiting them.
Sheol is naked before Him,
And Destruction has no covering.
He stretches out the north over empty space;
He hangs the earth on nothing.
He binds up the water in His thick clouds,
Yet the clouds are not broken under it.
He covers the face of His throne,
And spreads His cloud over it.
10 He drew a circular horizon on the face of the waters,
At the boundary of light and darkness.
11 The pillars of heaven tremble,
And are astonished at His rebuke.
12 He stirs up the sea with His power,
And by His understanding He breaks up the storm.
13 By His Spirit He adorned the heavens;
His hand pierced the fleeing serpent.
14 Indeed these are the mere edges of His ways,
And how small a whisper we hear of Him!
But the thunder of His power who can understand?”