Sunday, October 21, 2012

Inspired by Others

Over the past year as I have explored the world of blogging, I have met some wonderful people. Fellow bloggers. People I am infinitely impressed by - their writing is exquisite. There lives are even more so. If you are looking for encouragement and perspective, I encourage you to follow some bloggers and their stories. Here are my three favorites.

The blogger I have been following the longest is The Simple Wife. Joanne and her family live right in my neighborhood, although I have never met them. I've certainly prayed for them. Their world was turned upside down on January 11, 2011 when Joanne suffered a major stroke. A friend of mine posted her story on Facebook and I've been following ever since. It's a story of endurance; when life doesn't turn out the way we thought it would. When miracles are measured in small things not the complete resolution of pain.

Then there are the Deckers. Again, Denver neighbors. A young couple married but two years and already battling what will be a lifelong battle with Crohns. We've enchanged blog comments and emails. I have never met them, but boy have I prayed for them. I am absolutely fond of Carly -- she's the women I wanted to be in my 20's. I love watching them grow and fight through the struggle and find the joy of life together when "for better or worse, in sickness and health" has more reality for them than for most. When I read their story, I am encouraged that God wastes nothing. He is certainly using them.

My most recent blog follow is being played out by the hour on Facebook -- Jay's Warrior. Jay is dying...any day, any hour. This young man is faithful to the end. Again, nothing is wasted. His family is suffering and yet they are resolved to find their joy in the Lord. Incredible. 34,574 people are following his story. Amazing.

There are others. It seems that at any one time in my life I have three or four friends with a CaringBridge site. What a terrific organization - CaringBridge - allowing those battling serious illness to blog their story.

Thank you Joanne (and Toben), Ryan and Carly, and Jay (and Jay's family) for keeping me grounded; for reminding me that whatever we experience in this world does not compare with what will be experienced in our true home. You remain in my prayers daily.

1 Chronicles 28:20

...“Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

I Can Do Hard Things

My new favorite life phrase. I can do hard things. I can.

We all have days when it just isn't working out. Or days when we feel protective of our lives because things are going very well, and we know that our lives are seasons. So spring turns to summer, and summer fall and fall winter and winter back to spring.

Circumstances are only permanent if we make them so.

I can do hard things. I can.

I know today. I have responsibility to and for my today. I can do hard things today. Not every day will require courage. But many may or will. I can do hard things.

This fall season many turn immediately to spring or it may press on into winter. I don't know. Frankly I'm not sure I should care. I know who I am and whose I am. I can do hard things. He enables me to do hard things. And even in hard things there can be joy. The best kind. His kind.

That means tomorrow holds great promise.

Today I can do hard things.

(Special note: Today 39 years ago this very day I chose to follow Jesus through every season of life. And I can testify with confidence - He is good. He has shown me that I can do hard things.)

Saturday, October 13, 2012

This Holy Place

This Holy Place

by Stephen W. Smith


There are no stained glass windows here.

Only the gold of the Aspens and
the cathartic blue of heaven’s skies.

Yet, this is a holy space.

And in my heart, I am bowing.


The high priests swing their incense,

And it is the words that sway me–that slay me.

No candle burns here but my heart alone.

and I feel ignited. I am burning–finally burning.


The open book is my Eucharist.

The wafer offered me by Oliver, Frost and Whyte.

My cup is the poem of words that draw blood.

Words that wound. Words that heal.


This place–this moment is my church

and I belong. I am free. And I am at rest.

The words–they do baptize my wondering heart
to come home. To finally know this place as church.