He Still Moves Stones!!!

 

New American Standard Bible (©1995)
“He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said. Come, see the place where He was lying. Matthew 28:6

MountainSunrise

Nuggets from Easter Sunday, Sermon with Donald Tabb. . .

“No man takes my life from me, I take my own life from myself.”

“The stone was not rolled back to let Jesus out, it was rolled back to let other’s in to see the tomb was EMPTY!”

“No Cross? No Crown!”

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We had a richly blessed day with church and family/friends around our newly cleared off dining room table. We were late to church 🙂 We munched on Sean’s Breakfast casserole.  Our dining table was piled high with room renovation stuff, yes still, we finished a month or so ago, except Ashlyn took the “lovely project on. . .The lovely fountain has been cropped so you could not see the clay pumpkin from Thanksgiving. (Yes, the Lord, did ask me, “Do you seek to impress or to bless?” A little of both, and I cropped it right out!) Then I look at the basket and it “appears” one of the girls stuffed happy has horns! That’s a joke if you knew which girl. I opted to keep that in. . .Soon the table was filled to brimming with Carrot Souffle (Picadilly), Spinach Madeline with cauliflower/friend chef hands in the helping  (yes, they noticed the extra veggie!), Party Potatoes (my sister’s in law’s recipe and Hope’s fav), Cinnamon Apples (Honey Baked Ham Store), Ham: Same Store, Brown Sugar Turkey Breast, our cold layered cornbread salad (we forgot the corn). I did a little stirring, a little supervising, a little loving, but Meg managed to have it served hot and with grace at a young 17 years old. Kathleen dipped and dipped and found new things to dip in chocolate with her delight and you see the result. Bucky worked all weekend with Drew’s help to weed and spread pine straw. It looks so pretty and my sweet husband loves to sweat on the tennis court but not with weeds :(. So, it’s a major labor of love. Hope has major med school tests coming up so it was hard for her to come home with her sisters playing together in the kitchen, shopping for Spring Break, manicures, and cooking with me. But she took off with some good food to eat and is safely back with her Bella lovey. Our Friend, Connie cleaned up most of the busy kitchen. (We did eat dessert in paper bowls)
With all they did, why am I so tired??? 🙂

On a personal note, I experience the cross and resurrection, more personally now. That is all I can really say, cause I’ve not had quiet time with the Lord, except here sharing with you.

Investment Forward. . .

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I cuddled each touch point in prayer here. (Janet you started this whole material/tactile prayer thing with my quilt :)) I pressed into prayer with each daughter’s name and added our own little life things for Him, to hold near. I used to tell my girls on Easter Morning, Christ must have felt, even if restrained from saying so, “Tah Dah!’  Not that their was any magic to the moment, but because I believe He had to have been playful as He was serious because our God creates children to play. Over and over in Scripture, children are honored. Perhaps, it may be just about my relationship with my Jesus, but we are playful in our dynamic. . .So I’m just transparently sharing. . .What a privilege at Easter to pray this prayer forward for each of my girls and tuck this in their Easter Basket tonight. . .As they rise in the Light of tomorrow. . There:  the prayers will be tucked in with the hands of Christ for their Spring journey onward. In His Love and Mine, love each of you girls”

Hope, Ashlyn, Megan and Kathleen, more than you will ever, ever, ever know! And love you more! I win! Well, okay, you counter me. . .I loved you Second after He first loved you!

Make your own vestment in prayer this Easter for those you love! Easter Blessing. . .Sunday is Coming! Praise God!

Posted by Ann Voskamp, August 24, 2012  aholyexperience.com (click on her wondrous link!)

a prayer for a daughter

Father who breathed into this daughter…

I pray for this girl being formed into eternity….

May the wind always be in her hair

May the sky always be wide with hope above her

And may all the hills be an exhilaration

the trials but a trail,

all the stones but stairs to God.

God, clothe this girl in a gown of grace
Grace, the only dress that makes beautiful,
the style of Your spirit.

Nourish her on the comfort food of the Word,
Word, that makes her crave more of Christ,
have hunger pangs for Him.

Enclose her in communion with You
You, Love who makes her love, who folds her heart into a roof
that absorbs storms for souls,
that makes her tongue speak only the words that make souls stronger.

May her vocation in this world simply be translation

Translating every enemy into esteemed guest
Translating every countenance into the face of Christ
Translating every burden into blessing

When it’s hard to be patient… make her willing to suffer
When it’s ridiculous to be thankful … make her see all is grace
When it’s radical to forgive … make her live the foundation of our faith
And when it’s time to work… make her a holy wonder.

May she be bread and feed many with her life and her laughter
May she be thread and mend brokeness and knit hearts
May she be dead to all ladders & never go higher , only lower, to the lonely, the least & the longing
Her led of the Spirit to lead many to the Cross
that leads to the tomb wildly empty.

Oh, and raise me, Lord, from the deadness of my own sins to love this beautiful girl like You do…

In the name of Christ who rose

and appeared first

to one of His daughters…

Amen…

P.S. The Worldy reality is that my two main gifts for their baskets are late. Go figure, they will each get a pic of what is coming!

Carry Your Cross. . .

This Post is dedicated to my first Seasons discussion group, ya’ll remember who you are and so do I 🙂 Always will. . .Love. . .

A  baby was born under the star of all stars, forever to change our destiny in God. A leader learned  “pinpoint scale/generously sized,” God allowed me to facilitate a Bible Study Group. I objected, “I’m not qualified!” He said, “Do you love my sheep? Do you love them in a unique way no one else can. . .?” “Well, yes, Father each person’s love is unique as is mine.” “Then, WHAT is the problem?” So, off we went with this great group I had of women, whose wisdom and insight far “out-weighed” mine. . .but I did follow His heart in loving them “well.”

It was one of those Kingdom Building Bible Study Semesters. Stirring Kingdom discussion, authentic hearts, exponential spiritual growth and His love showed up in Big ways every week. We celebrated our time together in a closing at Hemingbough Plantation. . .gazebo, Hemingbough, Plantation

We had a beautiful lunch under that very gazebo with a blanket spread, fresh flowers, and girl delights. (After we braved, a mother goose that tenaciously protected our passage near her nest! You would have thought she was going to eat us alive!) One of things that made this time very special was what we did in our prayerful closing. Without music, without color, I shared with them a series of black and pictures, I will share with you. Very appropriate for Good Friday, in that we are all called to carry the cross in our lives. Little did I know then, what cross God would  call me to carry. . .But it is what it is. . .And I have some insight into God’s purpose of it. You have your own cross to carry.

As the shared our “crosses” that semester,  The Cross/His Cross will carry us across into the land beyond our dreams, the promised land of milk and honey. . .So now I share with you in youtube form, what I shared with the women that day. With hopes, it will shed the light of the Cross in your life too. . .

Video under doeturner. Name of Song is not credited. I wish I knew who drew this amazing allegory of the Christian walk? Anyone know? It has 137,487 views. That tells us something about need doesn’t it???

I’ve asked, more than once, just to cut a “little more off” of the load. So have many of us, I would think. . .It’s part of who we are in our humanity, but we have a bridge to cross my dear friends. If I may, add something to the perspective here. . .When we call out for help. . .”Lord, it is too heavy, help me!” Friends, He has carried the weight of the world on His shoulders. What I see befitting the character of our Lord, is Jesus showing up. . .”Alone, it is too heavy, but with me, we can carry it together.” Now, that’s my Jesus and it is your Jesus! Jesus, we love you and thank you for giving your life for our eternal life with God. Amen

We are called to live into a beautiful love story only our God can write. . .I’ve yet to see a period this side of heaven because there are none. . .See you on the other side. . . In His Love and Mine, tracey

Chris Bishop: Guest “Press This” and Amazing Artwork Image

Chris Bishop. (Click on his name link!) Please see the image of the Cross and read Chris’s article, “Always Wrestling.” I was profoundly moved by this artwork. I don’t know who did it, it does not say. .  .but I NEEDED to share it with you! Tracey

THE SON IS BEYOND YOUR CLOUDS: Guest Submission

THE SON IS BEYOND YOUR CLOUDS. (Click on her link to enjoy :))

From a Blog: “Unwalled” by Kim Sweeting (She lives in the Bahamas!) That alone, intrigues me! I found this post and loved it. In fact, She even talks about flying! This is my kind of gal for God’s Glory!  Great insight! I’m going to follow it. I’ve been very discerning about other Blogs. God told me to keep it my ‘Blog World” small for now. But this is too good not to share with my readers! So enjoy! Love in Him, twe

Image Found;got-2-write.blogspot.com

Image Found;
got-2-write.blogspot.com

Will the Sun/Son Rise in the Morning?

I woke up this morning and stood by a small window in which the sunshine was shining right in my eyes. My husband started to shade my eyes, and then he hesitated, knowing instinctively how good God’s sunlight was for me first thing in the morning. What a way, to wake up!  I’ve been talking to a new young friend about the sunshine. What it does for her to be outside in the sunshine. . .Have you ever thought about your faith in the sun?

You go to sleep at night, with no worry or doubt about the coming morning light. Yet ALL of us, at some point, to some degree, doubt if God is going to show up for us in OUR circumstance. Do you see the obvious contradiction here. Who made the sun? Who made the seasons? The rotation of the earth? We’ve cruised into areas in the northern hemisphere where the nights are short and the days are long. It stays light until 11 or 12 pm. So beautiful it was to sit at dinner at 9:00pm and have the sunlight cruise waters lit up before our very eyes. (Cruise to Alaska) All of us loved the long days!

We just trust the sun to do it’s thing. We don’t even give it a second thought. You and I don’t go to bed, with anxious thoughts of . . .What will we do if we wake in darkness? It the sun fails to rise in the horizon of our tomorrow? How will I navigate in the darkness?

God made the two great lights, the greater light to govern the day, and the lesser light to govern the night. He made the stars also. Genesis 1:16

He will bring forth your righteousness as the light And your judgement as the noonday. Psalm 37:6

By the word of the LORD the heavens were made, And by the breath of His mouth all their host. Psalm 33:6

“Those who bring sunshine to the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves.” James Matthew Barrie  (Creator of Peter Pan)

“Perhaps it will seem to you that the sunshine is brighter and that everything has a new charm. . . .” Vincent van Gogh

“Just living  is not enough. . .One must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.” Hans Christian Anderson

“Keep your face to the sunshine and you will never see the shadow.” Helen Keller

I challenge myself and all of you to think about your faith. (How can I read the above Truth about God’s creation of the sun and have more faith in it’s morning appearance than in the appearance of Jesus in my day? How can I, indeed. . .yet it is true. My belief in the rising sun is a “given” in my life. My belief in the “risen Son” is subject to doubt. Oh, God, help my unbelief this day!) This Easter season, our Lord will rise out of a tomb of darkness and shine brighter than the sun in the sky ever could, even on it’s very bestest, hottest, brightest day. We know our every day “faith in the sun” will rise each and every morning.  What do we know about our Lord to rise in our circumstance? What do we believe about the Sonshine in our lives? What do we trust about God’s consistency to move us from darkness to light? What do we do about the light that shines from His presence in our lives?

Are we “bathing beauties” in the Sonshine?

Dearest Father, Rise our Faith in your Risen Son far and beyond our belief in the sunrise each and every morning. We need our little mustard seeds of faith (Luke 17:6), resting in the darkness,  exposed to Your warm sunshine so we grow arms reaching upward into YOUR SONLIGHT of life. Amen

 

Image Found:apicturebooklife.blogspot.com

Image Found:
apicturebooklife.blogspot.com

 

The R X R of Relationships. . .

React or Respond. It’s your choice. Most of us react, it’s the “normal” behavior with which we are most “comfortable.” It’s how the “flesh patterns” with most of us react to “stimulus.” We just go through the day and do not know any different. The first challenge is to become aware of the difference between reaction and response.

Reaction comes very quickly and it is “off the cutf.”without thinking, way of acting or speaking back AT someone. AT someone. . It’s coming AT someone with your opinion, advice, hurt, anger, frustration, arrogance or fear. Fear fuels reactions like gasoline on a flame. (Yes, this comes after the Forest Fire Post, as God’s intention.) Reaction can picture out as a face to face confrontation.

Response looks different. It is someone who waits, puts space between an event or words, without immediate  intersession. It may feel odd because it is different than the “wordily way.” It honors the person’s request, or communication with time. Imagine if someone said, very genuinely, “Thank you for your honesty. Let me consider, carefully what you’ve said and get back to you.” If the person is a Christian and they practice this space as God space, then it is a rich “wait.” The waiting time can be minutes or days, etc because the person is processing the information and waiting on the Holy Spirit to counsel their response. Responses defer to the leading of the Spirit. Response never comes AT someone. Response comes along side. . . And walks with. . .

Our flesh is wired to react, our “spirit man” is wired to respond with love, grace and honesty. Relationships are messy because the reaction/response dance is stumble and bumble at best. One person expects a reaction, and you give them a response and misunderstanding ensues. One person reacts and the other person had hoped for a gentle response. More misunderstanding. It obvious that if both people are aware and know how to implement  responsive offerings, then communication is relationship building more often. A response~response interaction with the selfless love of God, brings intimacy of the three in one: God/Husband/Wife.

A responsive offering has a spark of Glory in inviting life into the relationship. I’m not an angel. I know more about reactions than I do responses. But, thankfully due to time in God’s word and wise companions, I do know the difference. I work hard at responding in the counsel of the Holy Spirit. Especially when the issues carries heart weight for the other person. It’s not easy, but it is a Kingdom Skill worth practicing. There are instances of Jesus in reaction, such as when He over turned the money tables in the temple (Matthew 21:12). But to the best of my knowledge, the responsive love of Jesus dominates Scripture. Often a response is a good question.  . .A Prayer. . .Or a Touch. . .Matthew 9:20