Friday, July 31, 2009

We are His poem

I took these pictures of roses in my friend, Marsha's front yard. We've been friends since high school! She and her husband, Larry, live in Santa Barbara, CA.

Many of you know the great challenge facing our family at this time. Our dear son-in-law, Robert, married to our Aimee, has testicular cancer that was not eradicated during 3-months of chemo. During that time of treatment their girls, Ethne 4 and Emeline 2 lived with us. Tomorrow they are returning, with their mom, who is 8 months pregnant. Their daddy is facing 4 or 5 months of treatment to perform stem-cell transplants in Indianapolis. After the baby is born, Aimee will take the children to Louisville to live with her sister, Sara and family, in order to be within 2 hours Robert.

A friend sent a video based on Eph. 2:10. See it here It ministered to me in a powerful way. But after thinking about it I’ve decided I don’t really agree with the interpretation.

The skit focused on the word, ‘workmanship, or masterpiece’ and it used the image of God fashioning our lives, as a Sculptor, with a chisel and hammer. I believe the Lord does change us into the image of Jesus, but I don’t think that this verse is referring to the process of cutting away, because the original meaning of the word ‘workmanship’ is actually poem.

Sculpting and writing have some similarities but they are two different processes. I think that sculpting is all about taking away, removing excess, bringing out the hidden treasure.

Writing a poem is more about putting in. Finding the perfect word, choosing carefully, intentionally, lovingly. Only the right words get in. The selection process is exact.

Now, think of the verse again, ‘we are His poem.’ Individually He created each of us with great skill and care. He fashioned us with a purpose and our lives express exactly what He has determined. Each and every word has meaning of its own and together, we form a worldwide poem by being who we were created to be.

So, today I am taking delight in how I am made. Instead of believing the lies of the evil one, who accuses me that I am stupid or lazy, I am deciding that God made me on purpose and I will declare His Authorship by being true to His design.

We are His workmanship

This is our two grandsons Ben and Caleb (holding up hot dogs wrapped in foil)
We are His workmanship

For the second time this year, the Lord has shown me something new about my life verse. This is amazing to me since I’ve meditated on this verse since my teenage years and believe me they were a long time ago.
So, here it is, “We are his workmanship created in Christ Jesus to do good works which he has preordained for us to walk in.” Eph. 2:10.
In an earlier Blog I talked about how I suddenly saw that the word ‘walk’ and realized that the good works God’s arranged for me to do are just like walking. They are everyday acts of service to my family and being polite in traffic and watching what I eat. Nothing flashy or noticed by others, just simple works of walking in faithfulness every single day.
Okay. Now, to this new one. It’s the words, ‘we’ and ‘us.’ I’ve always applied this verse to myself, to my life, my calling, my purpose. But the good works I’m called to walk in have to do with others. Me—relating to and working with and being a part of His body. Bringing my gifts to my sisters and brothers, local and worldwide. Being faithful in my connections, intentional in my relationships. He’s designed us to function together, to do His work side-by-side and hand-in-hand.
There is more. . . (continued on next post)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Take the Plunge

Pictures of our trip to CO.

I swam today. That shouldn’t be unusual since it’s been well over 100 degrees and I have a pool in my backyard. Still having a pool and plunging in are two different things.
When I went out back, the sound of a large wing moving through the air caught my attention. I looked up to see a hawk leaving my waterfall to perch in the shade on the back rock wall. I felt startled by his size and magnificence. He was a bit scary—big and powerful, wearing a ‘don’t mess with me’ expression.
I’m used to little birds, but was so thrilled to see this visitor that I slipped back inside to grab my camera. As I returned I heard the hawk’s call but only caught a glimpse as he soared away from my yard to circle in the sky. I wish I could post a picture here for you to see how he moved effortlessly through the hot summer air. But I missed the shot, so put down my camera and got into the pool.
I’m thinking about this experience. First, if I had not decided to go swimming, I would not have seen that bird, and it was right there in my yard for me to see and enjoy. Also, I would have missed the cool wonder of the water. I know I love swimming, and at this moment can’t imagine why I don’t indulge every single day. It’s good exercise, since I like to sing and dance in the water, and I really enjoy myself. All it takes is putting on a swimsuit.
Reminds me to another place that I don’t always take advantage of, where I find refreshment and joy. Surprises await me when I go into the presence of the Lord. Being with Him make the rest of the day easier. I gain strength and my soul is satisfied.
There is no excuse, since we each have a standing invitation. “Oh Lord, give us hearts that hunger for you, seek you and find their delight in your presence. Every day, Lord, every day, let me come to be with you.”