Origin: How Did I Come into Being?

The apostle Paul is on a roll. The city of Athens was a junkyard of idols(Acts 17:16, MSG), befitting the myriad of gods they represented. Add to that this detail: “The Athenians had a foolish notion that they were self-produced, and were the aboriginals of all mankind…that the first men sprung up in Attica like radishes.”* Laugh not, ladies. One wonders if our culture has taken a step back in time—oh, not graven images, but idols of fame, fortune, and self; not radishes per se, but persistent theories of evolution.   

Big, Big Questions

The shower was running, the music blaring, when I walked down the hall to the bedroom: “How deep is the ocean? (How high is the sky?)”* Exactly, I said to myself in light of the lunar eclipse of the evening before. How could a Blood Moon turn red in the shadow of the earth? Space.com tells us this much: “Sunlight scatters to produce the red colors of sunset and sunrise when it enters Earth's atmosphere at a particular angle.” Does it not make you pause for a moment to wonder at the majesty of creation?

A Thirsty Soul

The sad houseplant looked like how I felt. Forgotten, parched, brittle and malnourished. I had been so busy these last few weeks with all the responsibilities of keeping a family fed, clothed, and content, that I’d neglected that plant. I rushed it to the sink like a heart attack victim to the ER. Refreshing water flowed, but the soil was so hard and dry that the life-giving liquid just ran off into the sink. No matter how heavy the flow or how long the water ran, it just poured off the surface, wasted and unappreciated. I finally placed the weary plant in a pan of water to soak and hoped that the leaves would rise, the color would return, and the plant would be vibrant again. 

Wholesome Talk

Mean words. Potty-talk. Critical comments. It was the beginning of a long summer, and I purposed to tackle the issue of the ugly mouth I heard coming from my children. For that summer, my children and I focused on the verse above. We memorized it. We talked about it. We defined words and explained concepts within it. We looked for it lived out in others. We noticed the opposite qualities lived out in others. And most importantly, we asked God to help us walk out this verse in our family relationships. That was hard for a big sister with a huge vocabulary that could slice and dice, and a little brother who had strong, fast arms, fists and feet! 

Hindrances

Are you hindered? I am…or at least I feel like it. A lot! Webster defines hindrances as things that impede, stop or prevent…to hold back, to delay action…to interfere with activity or progress. Yep. Seems like I live there!

Walk Worthy

I love this action verb “walk.” In fact, I love a good walk…..one that awakens my senses and gets my blood pumping. I love a walk in the early morning hours when darkness becomes light and I can think through the day ahead. But the best kind of walks are those sweet evening walks with my beloved better half….how I love him and enjoy every moment in his presence. I particularly cherish time alone with him, hand in hand, discussing the day or our plans and dreams or our concerns for the children. That brief get-away sustains me, nourishes me. It reminds me of his love for me. It makes me feel secure and tenderly cared-for. It renews and refreshes my love for him, and my heart is open to his words, instructions and longings.

Unexpected Blessing

Before leaving East Texas, I had a dentist appointment. When I shared the details of our move with my dentist I found out she had taught at the dental school in Houston. Without hesitation she recommended a dentist she knew and had as a student. I quickly put the contact information in my phone so as not to lose it.

Be Prepared

I am learning all sorts of lessons by living in a huge metropolis in South Texas. Of course, most of these lessons come by trial and error. One such experience happened while driving back in from out of town.

A Good Example

Amid the feverish unpacking of boxes I heard the chime of the doorbell. When I opened the front door I discovered our teenage neighbor standing there with cookies, flowers, and a card in her hands.

Right in Front of Me? Or not?

Seeing a church right down the street from our house delighted me. I could not wait to go there. After our visit, I had no doubt about the “God-centeredness” of it. Friendly members, ministries reaching out to the community and the world, great worship, I could go on and on.

Called

Living in a new area, I was excited when a lady from a church we had visited calledand asked me to attend an event there that night. At first I had some excuses why I should not go, but then I thought, why not, and off I went.

Fixing Our Eyes

Amazing. The baseball field is mowed to perfection, I thought, as I waited for the game to begin. Straight lines mowed into a flawless checkerboard pattern captured my full attention. I secretly envy professional mowers. I’ve practiced “striping” my lawns and have learned a few tips on how to achieve the straightest lines possible.

The Least and the Greatest

It’s as big as a school bus, weighs up to ninety thousand pounds, and eats about one thousand pounds every day. And, yet, the humpback whale is able to thrust itself out of the water in incredible displays of power.  They frolic and breach in the warm waters by Hawaii where they travel to every winter to breed.

How Will The World Know?

We rounded the corner of the road that led to our church. As it came into view, I let our 5-year old granddaughter know we were almost there. “Does your church talk about God?” What an odd question for her to ask. “Yes,” I replied. Of course it does! Then she added, “We can’t talk about God at my school. We can only talk about God at church and at home.”