Thursday, February 27, 2014

that the well is deep
and I have no way to find
within myself alone.
Yet He promises
to give us life from Above
and we still doubt Him?
I can be so blind,
searching for answers
surprised that I do not find them
until I remember to open my eyes
And again.
He is ever merciful,
reminding me to look to Him
and giving me His hope,
when I give Him my heart.

Service for Him

Monday, February 24, 2014

I read yesterday, "Paul's idea of service is the same as our Lord's: 'I am among you as He that serveth'.... So long as there is a human being who does not know Jesus Christ, I am his debtor to serve him until he does. The mainspring of Paul's service is not love for men, but love for Jesus Christ. If we are devoted to the cause of humanity, we shall soon be crushed and broken-hearted, for we shall often meet with more ingratitude from men than we would from a dog; but if our motive is love to God, no ingratitude can hinder us from serving our fellow men." (Chambers)

How often do we despair in service simply because we look for the praise of men? Are we too quick to forget that it is not earthly things we hope for, but the reward that is Above? I have heard the sentiment from this generation that it is not worth doing the little things if they will not get noticed; that it is not necessary to go the extra mile if nobody will ever see it. Perhaps that is the reason for discouragement. The secret to determined, selfless service lies in the realization of how our Lord has dealt with us. "When we realize that Jesus Christ has served us to the end of our meanness, our selfishness, and sin, nothing that we meet with from others can exhaust our determination to serve men for His sake."

late afternoon

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The fire has reduced to glowing coals. Out the window, snow is falling again, and somehow I am glad to see it, despite being a bit chilly. There is soup to be made for dinner, bread to be kneaded, a laundry load to fold, a letter to be run out to the mailbox. Small things, part of the everyday, things that are good for the soul.

The Discipline of Heeding

Friday, February 14, 2014

"At times God puts us through the discipline of darkness to teach us to heed Him. Song birds are taught to sing in the dark, and we are put into the shadow of God's hand until we learn to hear Him. 'What I tell you in darkness' -- watch where God puts you into darkness, and when you are there keep your mouth shut. Are you in the dark just now in your circumstances, or in your life with God? Then remain quiet. If you open your mouth in the dark, you will talk in the wrong mood: darkness is the time to listen. Don't talk to other people about it; don't read books to find out the reason of the darkness, but listen and heed. If you talk to other people, you cannot hear what God is saying. When you are in the dark, listen, and God will give you a very precious message for someone else when you get into the light.
"After every time of darkness there comes a mixture of delight and humiliation (if there is delight only, I question whether we have heard God at all), delight in hearing God speak, but chiefly humiliation-- what a long time I was in hearing that! How slow I have been in understanding that! And yet God has been saying it all these days and weeks. Now He gives you the gift of humiliation which brings the softness of heart that will always listen to God now."

Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest -- devotional reading for Feb. 14

A Chilympiad

Monday, February 10, 2014

Last night was a first for Ibby and I... a chili cook-off, a.k.a. Chilympiad, supposed to be an Olympics of chili-making. I can't quite say that we slaved away over our chili, since in reality we just mixed up our favorite chili recipe and let it all cook away by itself in the crock-pot all day. Then we stowed it carefully in the vehicle and drove the few miles down the hill to the old white church in town, where the cook-off was being held. We sat for half an hour munching chips and salsa, visiting with our neighbors, and taking hurried glances at the judges' table, and at last they announced the winners. Despite high hopes, we slid in just behind bronze, but were quite happy to have taken part (and to enjoy the various array of chilies presented). The guy who won said he'd put Nebraska White-tail deer meat in his, which started the evening as a nameless brew and finished known as "Expensive Chili."

Well, both Ibby and I had always wanted to be in a cook-off, and it was a great first experience. I know for sure it won't be the last!


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

A city on a hill cannot be hidden.
Neither can the light in the eyes
Of a redeemed soul
Crying to Him;

Lord, give me a witness, I pray.
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