The Blueprint

As a young wife and mother, I thought I had the perfect blueprint for our family.  My intention was to have two children. No more. Within a few years we had two wonderful little boys. When I learned that I was expecting baby number three, I was extremely upset.

The Plumb Line

In the days before HGTV revealed the intricacies of  home decorating, I naively decided to redo the wallpaper in our bathroom myself. Why hire a professional when I could do it, right? Little did I know how tricky it would be to remove the existing paper or how tired I would become before finishing the project.

The Cavern

One summer our family toured Luray Cavern. Our guided tour took us deeper and deeper into the earth. As we walked the well-lit path, our leader pointed out the natural wonders on all sides. 

Dependent

Several years ago, “What Would Jesus Do?” was a popular phrase among Christians. This was the measure to use in decision-making. Pattern your behavior after Him. Not a bad idea, right? It’s a little harder to put into practice.

Quiet and Still

I have to admit, I don’t really like a quiet house. If I am alone, I’ll turn on the TV for some background noise. When fixing dinner or cleaning up, I like to watch or listen to something. I immediately sense the urge to turn on a little HGTV, etc. Even in the car, I am listening to something. Not that this is wrong, but I have allowed this to become a habit for me.

Little Miss Worry

When I was a child, there was a “Mr. Men” and “Little Miss” book series written by Roger Hargreaves. The characters in the stories had dominant personality traits that either caused them problems or showed another character how to engage in the positive quality. Everyone learned something through the moral lesson of story.

No Coincidence

A few months back I came to an intersection. As I looked to my right, about 100 yards down the road, a truck was spinning out of control and came to a stop just off the road. He apparently had a tire blowout. As I watched, one of his wheels came hurtling towards me, rolling and bouncing all the way. As it got closer, I eased forward a little, and it crossed the road about 15 feet behind my car.

Leaving your Legacy . . . Be Patient

Correct, rebuke, encourage; challenge, warn, urge (MSG). Paul ends his passionate charge to Timothy by drilling down on teaching what God has to say, not on what man wants to hear—correcting/challenging false impressions, rebuking/warning against wrong actions, encouraging/coming alongside to urge others on to do all things for the glory of God. Man has such a tendency to twist the truth of the Word.

Leaving your Legacy . . . Be Purposeful

Last page, last letter—the time has come. Paul gives his protégé, Timothy, a stirring charge. At the beginning of this letter he told him that he, Paul, was appointed a herald and an apostle and a teacher of the gospel (2 Timothy 1:11). Now he places his ministry of the gospel in Timothy’s hands. In effect, he endows his son in the faith with his legacy. He solemnly offers to Timothy, before God, what is tantamount to a binding oath. The Message translation is pretty onerous: I can’t impress this on you too strongly. God is looking over your shoulder.

Goodbyes are not Forever

Most bibles include maps with colored lines detailing Paul’s travels. The lines wind from city to city, port to port. Within a few sentences found in Acts, we glimpse the depth of the relationships Paul established among the groups of believers comprising the early church. In Acts 20, we see Paul rushing to make it to Jerusalem for the day of Pentecost. Instead of stopping in Ephesus, he invites the leaders of the church to meet with him for some final words of encouragement.

Wise or Foolish?

Days passed. The contractors appeared busy but had little to show for their activities. Measuring, surveying, leveling, digging and pouring cement consumed their time. They were laying a foundation, and the cement piers had to be deep and secure before the floors, walls, and ceiling went up.

Fearing Change

I accomplished the impossible. I devised a raccoon proof bird feeder! I just might post this victory message on a nature loving website since everything I’ve read states it can’t be done! True, these are deep-in-the-woods raccoons, not the city or state park variety who sift through trash cans. These do, though, love to raid our feeders using every acrobatic instinct known to these furry friends. What foiled their perseverance? Something new!

Thorns and Thistles

The battle never ends. I despise them—prickly thistles and the vicious thorns of the Locust tree that thrive in East Texas pastures. Both sprout and spread without need of fertilizer or rain. Removing them requires fortitude along with lots of sweat and personal protection. Realizing they resulted from Adam’s sin frees me to vent my frustration and out-right anger. They just don’t belong here!

Flimsy Trusting

Paychecks, health and relationships represent just a few things I’ve placed too much trust in. I can continue the list with government and educational systems. Each one, at some time, has disappointed me. Each one tempts me with my trust.

Overdue Apology

I looked forward to youth group every week. My mom dropped me off at the back door of the church and I darted through the hall, heading up the stairs to the unfinished “attic” where we met on Wednesday nights. I couldn’t wait to see my friends and hear the music and message to grow my faith.

Seat at the Table

Why do our furniture purchases occur when we’re on vacation? 
My husband had a valid point. It did seem we’d done our share of hauling tables in our SUV. Our current kitchen table had caught our eye while on our first Christmas vacation. We loaded it in the back of our car, drove for two days, and waited for my parents to bring the chairs a few months later.