Pride

Poetry

I just started reading a new book that I already am in love with.  “Unoffendable” by Brant Hansen.  There are several things I’d love to quote already just from the first chapter.  But, I will try not to quote the whole book.  🙂  What I’m writing here is not something I’m preaching to others but something I’m being convicted of myself.  Our pride/ego is a tricky thing.  It has it’s purpose and place but sure knows how to sneak in all the wrong places too.  First my poem, then quotes from the book:

Pride

We need it

And love it

We despise it

And accuse it

When it’s inflated

We feel like a king

When it’s injured

We feel the sting

It is just one piece

And not the whole

So forgive the injury

And let your pride go

 

And now from “Unoffendable”

“We won’t often admit this, but we like being angry.  We don’t like what caused the anger, to be sure; we just like thinking we’ve “got” something on someone.  So-and-so did something wrong, sometimes horribly wrong, and anger offers us a sense of moral superiority.”

And I love this next one,

“I’m me.  I tend to side with me.  My arguments are amazingly convincing to me.”

And finally,

“Anger is extraordinarily easy.  It’s our default setting.  Love is very difficult.  Love is a miracle.”

 

 

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Love Like That

Poetry

I know many doubt You are real

I have my doubts too

But when I see something so much bigger than me

I have to believe it is You.
It’s easy to wonder if You really care

When so many things go wrong

But in the midst of troubles I feel Your embrace

And my faith again is made strong
I certainly don’t have all the answers

My faith still wavers from day to day

But You seem to keep showing up

Over and over again proving Your love and grace.

 

Some may say Your kindness is a weakness

Showing such love after You’ve been rejected many times

But You don’t care. You love with abandon.

Letting nothing keep You from this heart of mine.

 

I want to love like that.

For Our Good

Poetry

There are certain lessons lost

When walking in the shade

But those learned when scorched

Are quickly not to fade

I wish I could learn 

Just as well on easy days

But my stubborn heart says no 

I will always find another way

I’m so glad You are stronger

Than my resistance, my pain

That You will use all this time

Still for my growth and gain.

Romans 8:28
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

Troubles

Poetry

You use pain to show me your healing

You use weakness to show me your strength

You use sadness to show me your joy

So rain down your will on me today.
How can I complain when trials come,

when they open my eyes to your face

Every disappointment

throws me in your arms

So rain down more troubles today.

I am

Poetry

I am the woman at the well

The sinner thrown to her knees

The woman wiping perfume with her hair

Mary, Martha and the rest of these

 

I am the thief on the cross

Zaccheus and a Pharisee

Judas, a friend and a traitor

I am the least of these

 

I am Saul as he was blinded

I am Mary at the open grave

A witness on the road to Damascus

Only by my faith, am I saved

 

Luke 7:47-50

47 “I tell you, her sins—and they are many—have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love.” 48 Then Jesus said to the woman, “Your sins are forgiven.”

49 The men at the table said among themselves, “Who is this man, that he goes around forgiving sins?”

50 And Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

Battle Scars

Poetry

I wish I could say I’ve been a victor

And stayed the course with You

I wish I could say I kept my faith

And never truly doubted You

 

I wish I could say I’ve been stronger

And stood on a solid ground

I wish I could say I learned my lessons

And never looked back or turned around

 

But that’s not the case

I am not the strong one

I fail temptations and tests

Coming out broken and undone

 

I get burned by the flames

I abandon my ark

I shy away from Pharaoh

I run to the dark

 

And every time I get injured

You are there to rescue from harm

You still love, still forgive

You scoop me into your arms

 

I wish I could say I’ve been good

And won this war for You

Truth is I’ve been a traitor and a fool

And the only real hero is You

To Trust or Not to Trust

Poetry

I’ve been here before

And I know which way to go

So how come everytime I step my foot out

The rest of me doesn’t want to follow

Hindered by self

And the desire to be filled

Doubting Your promises

And fearing Your will

What if it is not what I want

What if it’s full of sacrifice

What if I’m never happy

What if I could create a better life

Do I choose trust

in this uncertainty

Do I trust 

You love me abundantly?

 

Jeremiah 29:11

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

 

His Heart

Poetry

You’ve shown me your heart

Your desire for each one

Your love for each person

No matter what we’ve done

You’ve shown me your intent

You always seek our good

You never intend us harm

Yet You’re still misunderstood

Maybe past hurts and our pain

Cause us to question your ways

But You are still there loving us

And desiring a relationship always.

You’ve shown me Your heart

The lengths to which You go

To prove your love and affection

Yet we still turn and say no. 

2 Thessalonians 3:5 

“May the Lord lead your hearts into a full understanding and expression of the love of God and the patient endurance that comes from Christ.”

Sanctification

Poetry

Grace consumes me

Strength always finds me

Hope keeps being rebuilt

Pushing and pulling

Renewing my frame

Preparing my heart for this hill

 

Sanctification

The generic meaning of sanctification is “the state of proper functioning.” To sanctify someone or something is to set that person or thing apart for the use intended by its designer. A pen is “sanctified” when used to write. Eyeglasses are “sanctified” when used to improve sight. In the theological sense, things are sanctified when they are used for the purpose God intends. A human being is sanctified, therefore, when he or she lives according to God’s design and purpose.

Definition taken from: http://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionary/sanctification/

“…But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” 1 Corinthians 6:11

 

Pets and Price Tags

Analogies

My childhood experiences with pets is not what I would call positive ones.  One fish jumped out of the bowl and died.  Another fish was found frozen to death after my brothers put him outside in the 20 degree weather to “cool off”.   And another fish that maybe died of natural causes??  Not too sure, I think I was already too scarred from the prior two fish experiences.  Besides the fish, we had some rabbits that we kept in a large cage in the back yard.  I was very young when we had the rabbits and the two things I remember about them was 1) I loved going outside to look at them and occasionally hold them.  2) One day they were gone and my parents said they got out of the cage and must have gotten eaten by the neighborhood cats.  Speaking of cats, we finally convinced my dad to let us get one.  He is terribly allergic to most animals, especially cats.  However, some family friends had just got a beautiful Persian Himalayan cat and they are supposed to be somewhat hypoallergenic.  So after a lot of begging and pleading, we got a cat!  Sedrick Fitzgerald Satterfield.  We loved him.  I held him in my lap and sang songs to him, which I’m sure he loved wink wink, while my boring ol’ brothers played basketball.  We got to love on him for about a week or two and then my parents decided it wasn’t working.  He was the only cat in the history of cats who had trouble finding the litter box so they found him a new home.  And that was it.  That was my upbringing and history with pets.  So while I like them and enjoy them, I’ve not considered myself a pet person and never had experience with things like house training.  

After our middle son was born, my husband and I decided it was time to get our first dog.  What better time for an inexperienced pet owner to get a new puppy than shortly after having a new baby, right? We chose an adorable little Jack Russel since “Frasier” taught me how smart they can be.  Long story short is we decided we were not ready and it was not the right time for us to manage a new puppy in the house.  Fortunately a co-worker and very excellent doggy momma had a lot of land with 2 other Jack Russells so Zoe went to a very good home.

Fast forward 3 years…. We inherited a Shih Tzu from my grandmother who had moved into a nursing home and couldn’t take Mopsi with her.  We had Mopsi for about a year, during which time we also had 2 cats, a new baby and some major postpartum depression.  Needless to say, having a dog once again did not work out for us.  Our babysitter at the time loved Mopsi so we were grateful that she went to a very good home as well.

So our dog experience as a family has been more of a foster system than a forever home. Since then, we’ve been looking for the right time and the right dog.  Our middle son has been begging for a puppy for the past year but he’s also allergic to dogs so with our history and his allergies, we’ve learned that we need a dog who is:

  1. Hypoallergenic
  2. Not too big, not too small
  3. Adorable and playful
  4. Doesn’t have high energy needs
  5. Female
  6. Good with kids

I’ve continually checked adoption sites and breeder sites over the past year or two but haven’t found the perfect fit.  Then several weeks ago, it happened. I fell in love with a puppy and she met all of our criteria.  Well, all except one.  Her price.  We never saw ourselves spending a lot of money for a dog, especially when there are a million puppies you can get for free or a small fee.  But based on our past mis-matchings, we didn’t want to lose the chance to get this doggy that seemed so perfect for our family.  So we took the plunge and we got her – Myah Scarlett Princess Fluffy Turtle, Myah for short.

As I was reflecting on how much money we spent on her, I was thinking about what that says about her value to us.  Please don’t get me wrong here, she is just as valuable with or without the price tag attached but the money signifies the tangible investment we’ve made.  I then realized if I can more clearly see her value and our commitment to her because of money we paid, how much more value must Jesus see in me since He paid his life.  Myah’s price tag has dollars on it, my price tag has Jesus’ life.  What does that say about my worth to Him?  It is almost impossible to comprehend but I can say with certainty that is not the kind of payment you walk away from.  He’s in it for the long run and we are beyond valuable and precious to Him.

In His Care

Poetry

My heart is not in want

You provide all I need

To recognize and appreciate that

Is something new indeed

All that matters is how You see me

You say I’m a child of the King

You say I’m precious and forgiven

You see in my heart, all things unseen

I will look to You

my great defender

You guide my steps

To You only will I surrender

Shelter me 

in Your dwelling place

beneath Your wings

Secure in Your love and grace.

“For our struggle is not against human opponents, but against rulers, authorities, cosmic powers in the darkness around us, and evil spiritual forces in the heavenly realm.”

Ephesians 6:12 

Hidden Treasures

Analogies

I have a table, a side coffee table, that’s been in my living room about a month or two.  I see it every day.  We use it to hold a basket of books on top and a basket of toys on the bottom.  It’s useful and it looks nice.  But today I looked over and saw it has a drawer!  Somehow I had never noticed it before.  It’s a small, discreet drawer – perfect for maybe some pens and a notepad.  The table just increased in usefulness and value to me.  Actually, it was always that way, with that extra value.  I just hadn’t noticed.

What secret treasures do you possess that the Lord hasn’t revealed to you yet?  What hidden drawers of usefulness have always been there that you just haven’t seen?

Isaiah 45:3

I will give you hidden treasures, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, who summons you by name.

Listen

Poetry

Tune your ear to hear Me

And disregard all other noise

I have something different to say

I bring wisdom, encouragement and joy

Listen not to the competing sounds

They hinder, hurt and distract you from me

Give them no room, no voice in your heart

But fine tune your life to hear only Me

Together

Poetry

Listen with an open heart

Yet know the decision is still yours

Accept the lessons and the pain

But don’t let them linger and define you

Know that others are doing their best

They are learning and getting hurt too

Let’s not blame each other

We are all facing battles

Don’t turn the sword on each other

Let’s fight this together

With peace, acceptance, grace

Patience, forgiveness, reject all hate

Delicate Life

Poetry

So tricky, so delicate, this path of life. 

Walk carefully yet dive in boldly. 

There is a balance to be discovered 

as we face each new day. 

Loving others with caution 

yet reckless abandon 

is by far the best way.  

To embrace hopes and dreams 

despite the risk they pose, 

to daydream and take chances 

on outcomes still unknown.

 This is life. 

Uncertain, exciting, 

sometimes painful 

yet always grateful 

for each new breath.