What's a girl to do? Is it my fault I was born beautiful? To hear my parents talk, you'd think it was a sin.
Enough was enough! I didn't choose gorgeous hair or skin like porcelain.
So, when the first good-looking guy came along with an invitation, I was outta there!
I know I've been blessed. It couldn't have been easy for Cousin Mordecai to muscle through his own grief when Mom and Dad died so he could raise me.
It's so much easier to be thankful for Cousin Mordecai's generous spirit, than focus on how much I miss my parents. Things could have gone in a whole different direction.
28 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”29 “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” 31 Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”
My poor parents. As a child, they enrolled me in swimming lessons twice. I absolutely hated it. I couldn’t seem to control my arms and legs, much less get them working together.
The second time I was forced into trying to learn this impossible skill I nearly drowned when the teacher made me go to the deep end. Then she thought I was playing as I sank towards the bottom for the third time.
Besides the whole “I’m going to die!” trauma, what I remember most about those swimming lessons was that the teacher didn’t know my name. How could I have confidence in someone who nearly let me drown, and couldn’t even call me by name.?
Do we test the Lord sometimes just to make sure He’s paying attention? Why do we think He doesn’t know our name or care about our heartfelt cries?
Peter had witnessed the miracles of Jesus. He had traveled, talked, eaten and slept with Jesus for quite a while. How could Peter not believe way down deep in his gut that Jesus was more powerful than any elements?
My humanity makes me wonder if sometimes Jesus doesn’t get a little disgusted with our lack of faith. I wonder how many “swimming lessons” I will have to take before I know that I know that I know, that Jesus is just waiting for us to call His name and reach for His hand.
What am I struggling with instead of reaching for the hand of Jesus?
36 Even now the one who reaps draws a wage and harvests a crop for eternal life, so that the sower and the reaper may be glad together. 37 Thus the saying ‘One sows and another reaps’ is true. 38 I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor.”
Our four year-old granddaughter blesses our lives with her curiosity and affection. It doesn’t seem to matter what we are doing, she likes to be right in the middle of it. She asks tons of questions, soaking it all up and then asking more questions.
This spring she wanted to join me as I was planting flower bulbs. I hoed up the row and showed her how to drop the bulbs in the ground properly, and cover them up.
I thought this was a pretty efficient and age appropriate strategy for getting the bulbs in the ground along one side of our house, and letting her be involved at the same time.
That was not four year-old thinking. After three or four bulbs, she stood up, stretched, and with all sincerity asked, “Why does this have to be so hard?”
How often do we say the same thing to God? How many times do we long for the beautiful, tantalizing flowers, but frown or fret about the hard work it takes to get them? Do we forget that none of our victories or triumphs is achieved solely from our own efforts?
Entertainment award programs are typically a wonderful example of people giving credit where credit is due. How much more does God long to bless us if we will just stop to acknowledge His hand upon ours? Let us be glad for the benefits of our hard work and His.
Is there someone I need to thank for their hard work?
14 You are the world’s light—a city on a hill, glowing in the night for all to see. 15-16 Don’t hide your light! Let it shine for all; let your good deeds glow for all to see, so that they will praise your heavenly Father.
Last month, Tom and I celebrated out 44th wedding anniversary. How did that happen? (Yes, we were infants when our families carried us to the altar.)
A few weeks before our anniversary, I was reaching the panic stage while preparing for a school event that was important to me. One of my colleagues kept asking if I was alright.
I finally turned around and looked at him incredulously. Didn't he know? (In my sane brain later, I knew he couldn't possibly.)
"When Tom is here, I can do anything! I'll be fine when he comes."
We'll skip the conversation about the difference between empowering and enabling for now, Dear Reader. Maybe this clip from one of my favorite movies will help.
As we were cleaning up a couple of hours later, my colleague told me as soon as Tom walked in the door my face lit up, and I became noticeably peaceful.
Dear Reader, God wants our lights to shine, not just for the ones we love, but even more so for the One we love.
And here's a thought to spark a little joy in our spirits. Don't you think Jesus lights up when we turn to Him with open arms?
I fervently hope and pray, Dear Reader, that your light will shine on those around you, and that you bask in "the lovelight of Jesus's face".
Are you a baker, Dear Reader? Not a dessert maker, but one who bakes bread?
Is there anything better than the aroma of bread rising or baking? And don't you love warm, fresh bread with a bit of butter?
Our son, James, is an amazing baker! I love walking in the door when he's been baking rolls or bread. There's something kind of comforting about it.
And Jesus told a fourth parable.
Jesus took a topic his listeners understood, one that affected their everyday life, to share an important lesson. Long before Mazlow developed his hierarchy of needs, Jesus knew to use the basic need of all people (sustenance) to teach a lesson.
If you're a baker, then you may have experienced what happens if the yeast gets too old, or is mixed with liquid that's too hot. Or maybe you're like me, and you simply got too impatient waiting for it to work.
But flour and water alone make paste, not mouth-watering hot rolls. The leavening makes all the difference.
In the same way, God has given us specific instructions (Exodus 20: 1-17) to have the best lives possible. As we patiently work them into every part of our lives, we begin to see the character of God begin to rise within us.
Dear Reader, how have you seen God's character rise within you lately? Is there an area that perhaps has taken more patience, and grace, in order to see evidence of God's hand working in your life?
Not to worry, Dear Reader. God's arms are long, his muscles are strong. and He never runs out of patience when it comes to working the best into and out of His children.
Well, maybe it wasn't exactly a mountain, but it sure wouldn't have moved without Jesus helping out.
Getting ready for our Friends and Family Tea includes lots of cleaning and furniture moving. This year I thought it would be a good idea to move the round oak dining table from the enclosed porch to the dining room for beverages.
Dear Reader...Dear Friend, how good you are! How generous and gracious!
Since sharing that my job had been eliminated for the upcoming school year, you have blessed me more than you can imagine with your gifts of compassion and encouragement. They have calmed and soothed my soul.
Hi, my name is Alice. A Way with Words is about sharing faith,
fun, & encouragement. Thanks for stopping by! I hope you find a little something to take
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