Thursday, September 30, 2010


This sweet gal is due today, and I'd ask you to lift her up to our Lord. I've witnessed more change in her life in one year than almost any other I've known. Blessings on you, Kate, as you enter into motherhood, and as you continue growing into the lovely lady God has created you to be.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Well friend, I never did get to post you a note. I will commemorate you and your sweeties instead, and promise to pray sweet scriptures of grace to your soul.

I've been gripped with nostalgia this day, and the pitter of the rain has seemed to soften the sweltering state of my soul. Old friends glided through my mind and into the present with that captivating calm known only to familiar frames. I resound with you, Joyelle, and I pray that God might grant contented grace to consider the past with the relishing sort of glee that comes with fall, and stays until the present is tender enough to embrace again. While I seem to stand continually on the turnstyle of change, I am lingering a bit longer in memory, sampling those trusted delights of time worn fellowship crowned with understanding. What is this longing so deep, to be understood; to know and be known? Huh.

Monday, September 27, 2010

I am blessed

It is raining this day, and after a month of heat, I welcome this repose. I am supposed to be getting ahead on homework, but it seems that is the last thing I am able to do. It has been busy here, and I've not taken proper time to process life events, so it seems this day is appointed for such things.

I've before mentioned a woman, unnamed, that the Lord brought into my life last year. He has so sovereignly used her, and it seems that He has tightly bound our hearts, and the hearts of her daughters to one another. I want to praise God this day for His unexpected provisions, blessings, and abundance in my life.

She is precious and wise. She knows me, and loves me. It was her appointed task yesterday to draw out, lightly chasten, and redirect my eyes to the truth I'd been unable to see in my life. I've known something was amiss, but I just couldn't pinpoint it. I was airing my heart of its aches and all of the things that seemed to be vacant therein, when she stopped me.

She opened to Colossians and pointed to a passage. "I pray this for you everyday, and it seems to me that God has been answering every request. Is there something I'm missing?"

(Please note that grace is an adorning wreath upon her, and these words brought immediate beauty back into view.) She continued to remind me that God works with us individually, and His blessing is often vacant in a material, literal way, and present in His communion and transmission of truth to our immortal spirits. I stand amazed at how blinded and deceived I've been in my thankless state. I've overlooked His favor in so many ways and disconcerted myself with what seemed to be missing and necessary to my finite mind. How many gifts lie strewn about our feet that serve as triplines in our quest for what lies just beyond! Perhaps it is only my thankless heart, but I think not.

He is, for those in Christ, interested more in conforming us to the image of His Son, than the image of our peers, friends, or culture. He will do what seems best to bring this about, and because He is good, we will be blessed. I am so thankful for this reminder, and couldn't help but share. For what are you thankful this day?

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Ofttimes the contents of a day are simply too much for the common courtesies, and at nightfall I must have some bouyant plucking inlayed on deeper bass. My pen scratches furiously at these times, and this frenzy falls without much warning. The ills seem all too much, the gaiety inappropriate, and and my donning of some external persona or beautification--impossible. It's that icy February rawness slapped right in your face.
A question was raised to me tonight that held no inherent value, and was not delivered with any intended plaguing. The man delivering it had no idea its effect, nor did I when it burrowed in my mind. I am thinking of Psalm 42:3 "...they say to me all day long, "Where is your God?"

My plans are often asked of me, and I have no response to those that are seeming to insinuate "where is your God?" -- or better yet, "what have you missed of His leading?"

It is not that I haven't, or don't think of this--often, but the answers are not yet mine. Psalm 131 says, "1 Oh LORD, my heart is not proud, nor my eyes haughty; Nor do I involve myself in great matters, or in things too difficult for me. 2 Surely I have composed and quieted my soul; like a weaned child rests against his mother, my soul is like a weaned child within me.

Spurgeon intimates, "Comparing all the Psalms to gems, we should liken this to a pearl: how beautifully it will adorn the neck of patience. It is one of the shortest Psalms to read, but one of the longest to learn." The psalmist is succinct in his wording, but profound in his speaking. He declares that his involvement is fixed simply upon the realm wherein the Lord has placed him, and he decidedly mixes not with the unfurling events of Providence. Surely this is David, who will be king, but for now, his soul is contented and at ease; resting while matters above him are carefully selected and arranged to unravel at His charge.

I am always struck by this, for the "great matters" and "things too difficult for me" all refer to Providence, and that vain wind-grasping that Solomon alludes continually to in Ecclesiastes. I am to make it my aim to lead a simple, quiet, and godly life--with all humility, while being ready always to tell of this glorious hope. Perhaps I am making circles here (it is 2am), but my soul is stirred to adhere to this word, and to call you to it as well. Who amongst you rests as that weaned, contented child? Whose soul is quieted and composed? Who involves himself not in these difficult matters? Whatever our experience, place in life, or the stacked heap of spiritual advancements we seem to have made--until our souls are consistently coralled as this, let us guard our lips, and look not to the outward of man, but to that kernel that is him. .
Again, it seems to me that much is said in silence, most of which is crowded with noise. Silence is deafening, and it is much preferred to push through to activity than press in to hear. I believe the Lord is weaving such silent beauty on the broken loom couched up in our souls, and that foolishness alone would desire the product to be prematurely removed. I am exhausted

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

David Nevue played his piano rendition of "Amazing Grace" as I hung up the phone with my aging grandma. She mentioned in passing that is is hard for a woman to have all her grandchildren off. She spoke of our physical absence, but as much she mourns the emotional presence that simply does not exist in many of my cousins. My heart hurts for this sweet woman who has struggled so to do what she knows to be best. She quickly transitioned to the Hoops' crops, the third cuttings of hay, how it dropped to 44 the other night, and how a mama bear and her cub ran in front of their car the other night. "The cub crossed right over and ran straight up the tree!" She gulped with glee and went on to speak of her latest canned pears, peaches, applesauce, and carrots to freeze. The sweet thing is 84, has osteoporosis and has known sorrow. Her slight frame tells a story her lips can't pronounce and I love her so much this night! Oh how dreadful is the curse of death and the pronouncement of the end of this time, and how I long for unbroken life. I always revert to sweet Psalm 90 and the span of life as a sigh, a short tale, or a watch in the night and am reminded of how quickly that vibrant morning grass withers in the noonday sun. I want to hold onto everything, and that very grip that keeps love must loose itself to let it to pass. I am sorry, but I hate this truth, and if it weren't for my Lord conquering death I'd find all too many cases for despair. He is a hope -- the fullest spanse and greatest fulfillment of any and everything we've ever desired, and it is only, and always fitting to look unto Him. Consider Jesus.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Orphan Girl - Gillian Welch

This struck me straight, and I hope it reaches you all as well. Let's pray for these little sweeties across our globe, and ask that our Lord might connect our hearts to one and minister in that tender, sullen, spot of despond.

I am an orphan on God's highway
But I'll share my travels if you go my way
I have no mother no father
No sister no brother
I am an orphan girl

I have had friendships pure and golden
But the ties of kinship I have not known them
I know no mother no father
No sister no brother
I am an orphan girl

But when He calls me I will be able
To meet my family at God's table
I'll meet my mother my father
My sister my brother
No more orphan girl

Blessed Savior make me willing
And walk beside me until I'm with them
Be my mother my father
My sister my brother
I am an orphan girl

Thursday, September 9, 2010

The color of Hope

Tomorrow I head somewhere in the south Carolina country, and 150 or so grad students commence our time at the "grad retreat." The topic is hope, and in attempts to ready my journal, I was trying to picture the color of hope. If you read this and have a second, let me know in which color you picture hope.
The other night Pandora played me a song called the "Wagoner's Lad" by a group called the Duhks. I've not known of this great old ballad, but quickly my mind carried me off to a broken fence and dusty road where I was collecting little chicks in my apron. The lyrics were a sweet blur of autumn and I couldn't quite make out their meaning. After discovering the song's words, I mourned a bit and set my thoughts on womanhood. The first stanza goes "Oh, hard is the fortune of all womankind, she's always controlled, she's always confined, controlled by her parents until she's a wife, a slave to her husband the rest of her life."

Indeed, for most cultures of the earth, this song rings true, but I want to set my mind aright. The curse presents the plight of mankind (Gen. 3), where the man will desire to rule his wife, and the woman, to overthrow her husband in usurping his authority. Neither pictures the essence of harmony each person seeks when entering that covenant, but hope is not lost, for God always presents the remedy to such things, and I want to reside there -- in feminine freedom.

My heart slipped out the other day while eating lunch. I'd been daydreaming about floral earth tone linen when I proclaimed that I'd quite like to wear aprons as part of my wardrobe. It seemed perfectly normal until my words reached my co-eater's ears. I asked her then if she agreed, and not remembering what she said, she gave some sort of no, and walked off with her tray. Feeling a bit rejected, I chuckled at my silly vocalized surmisings. Later I came back to these thoughts and realized that I am hopelessly feminine, and there's no real use in denying it. I love to split wood and drive tractors, but my furrows are plowed to reap beauty, and wood split to engender and spread warmth to those I love. I am a woman, not a man. I do not desire career, success, or worldly acceptance, and I feel I need to confess this. I've vacillated in these years, feeling a pressure to perform and yet no real desire to do so. My venue is the human heart, and if any remembrance should be left, I desire it be in love, and the impression cast by the presence of God. May we usher in, and be the bearers of both life and beauty in this hungry, confused world.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Gillian Welch - I'll Fly Away

The Weight - Gillian Welch & Old Crow Medicine Show

Parkfield jam - Paul Chesterton sings Nellie Kane

I couldn't resist... I love this song.
This is from Spurgeon's morning and evening book, and this really ministered to me... enjoy!

“Hast thou entered into the springs of the sea?”

Job 38:16
Some things in nature must remain a mystery to the most intelligent and enterprising investigators. Human knowledge has bounds beyond which it cannot pass. Universal knowledge is for God alone. If this be so in the things which are seen and temporal, I may rest assured that it is even more so in matters spiritual and eternal. Why, then, have I been torturing my brain with speculations as to destiny and will, fixed fate, and human responsibility? These deep and dark truths I am no more able to comprehend than to find out the depth which coucheth beneath, from which old ocean draws her watery stores. Why am I so curious to know the reason of my Lord’s providences, the motive of his actions, the design of his visitations? Shall I ever be able to clasp the sun in my fist, and hold the universe in my palm? yet these are as a drop of a bucket compared with the Lord my God. Let me not strive to understand the infinite, but spend my strength in love. What I cannot gain by intellect I can possess by affection, and let that suffice me. I cannot penetrate the heart of the sea, but I can enjoy the healthful breezes which sweep over its bosom, and I can sail over its blue waves with propitious winds. If I could enter the springs of the sea, the feat would serve no useful purpose either to myself or to others, it would not save the sinking bark, or give back the drowned mariner to his weeping wife and children; neither would my solving deep mysteries avail me a single whit, for the least love to God, and the simplest act of obedience to him, are better than the profoundest knowledge. My Lord, I leave the infinite to thee, and pray thee to put far from me such a love for the tree of knowledge as might keep me from the tree of life.