Monday, March 23, 2015

The ways of God are unpredictable. He is mysterious and good. We can trust Him. When we move along through life, yielded to His voice and His purposes for us we can let go of worry and fear...but something in us is driven to "figure out" what He is up to.


Still we insist on searching for "clues" about His plans for our lives like a sort of spiritual Sherlock Holmes.

Unfortunately our attempts at sleuthing around Omnipotence will always come up cold. 

I mean, come on...who are we fooling but ourselves?

"For who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been His counselor?" Romans 11:34 

If we knew what He was going to do with our "every days" how would our faith grow?

Clearly He has a better way. 

I wonder if His will has not as much to do with the end result or the receiving, but more about the refining and the growing that happened in-between these divine purposes. 

Do I know that He loves me and that He is with me today? 

This is His will for me.

I have to believe this most on those days when I face a pile of dishes or a load of laundry. 

These predictable tasks are most taxing...even degrading at times.

"This is His will today...HE is with me and HE loves me." 

Scrub. Sweep. Fold.


His will not my own.

I have to know this when plans change...

We are selling our old trailer that I so hoped to see restored.
(after uncovering the facts that it will require more time than we have to put into it.)

Willow & Juniper LLC is no more. 
(but the seeds from this business have been planted into a new business for Rachael, her family, and our community. I'm grateful to have been a small part of that.)

Stop. Sell. Close.


His will not my own.

It's ok because I know that HE is with me and He loves me.

The mystery of His will that seemed to be just beyond my reach was here all along...

The gift of Today and the Grace to go with it. 

HE is with you Abby you step into a new chapter of your life as a young adult, and HE loves you.

HE is with you you soak up these last bits of your childhood and prepare to face the challenges of becoming a young man, and HE loves you.

HE is with you you trust Him for your sensitive heart and enjoy just being a kid for a little while longer than your big brother and sister, and HE loves you.

The cherry tree blossoms are flying away like snowflakes on a spring breeze today, yielding their glory and beauty for a more fruitful purpose.

Without the wind whipping away her beauty there would be no fruit.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

the knowing joy

This is you and me just before the valley of the shadow of death. We had no idea what was ahead of us. But God did. This is you and me and our baby. You can see the joy in our embrace. We could easily hear God whisper to our hearts the same words He whispers today, "I love Me." Our baby went to heaven shortly afterward. And then little Mila that you held and her parents that we never met...they all went to where our baby was. Then Dad. Death was closer than life for us and we tried hard to hear the same whispers of His love. Our embrace became a clinging and our smiles gave way to tears. We wrestled and we questioned and we tried hard to numb the reality that we faced...the everyday fact that death is close and how we had to decide to trust or live in constant fear that God could take a child, a family, a father, a mother, a dream, in just a moment. Yes, the same God we joyfully trust in in the glory of a sunset on the endless sea, the same God that appoints life...appoints death. Dare we trust Him? Maybe this photo is a kind of "before". Maybe I was reluctant to look at it for a while because I longed for the oblivious joy of that day. I still cry and I know you do too. We always will. But something happened in us and for us after this, a beauty from the ashes. God has entrusted our hearts with something precious. We've been given a glimpse of the forever...a little peek into eternity.  We realize now that "we have this treasure in earthen vessels.." today. We had to choose to except the fact that His whisper, "I love Me", was there in the dark just the same as it was with sunrise and sunset. Remember how I was telling you the other day that floating is like trusting...especially floating in the ocean? You've gotta relax if you're gonna float. We both have worn the struggle of these days in our souls on our faces...we can see it in new lines of sorrow around our eyes. We've treaded water together long enough my love...there is nothing left to to do now but exhale and float on Grace. And by the way..this knowing joy looks amazing on you.

hug it out

Some days they fight like a "rollin' ball of butcher knives...teeth, hair, and eyeballs" as Daddy says.
And then some days they do this. They can't help it, they have their mama's Irish temperament. 
I do, from time to time, warn them that if they can't get along I will make them walk down Main Street Silverton, the three of them, holding hands. They know I'm serious and they know I will take a photo and blog about it too. 

Hence...the hug. 

to our eighth grader

Elusive brightness...
adolescence can't hide your kind of light
It's just warming up. 
 There will be some, 
in the four years to come,
that squint with a cynical eye
Resist the 
Stand firm in the 
that you are the you
meant you to be.