Source: Taking a Vacation from God?
Wrote this two years ago and I still believe it’s true.
Hot tears rolled down my cheeks during intermission.
“Do you want to leave the play?” my nineteen-year-old son asked.
“No, I’m going to see how this ends. Surely, there’s some value.”
People may not agree with me, but there was nothing redeemable about the musical, “The Book of Mormon.” I found it crude and offensive on multiple levels.
I’m not Mormon, and I rarely attend a play that I haven’t reviewed before hand. However, my son persuaded me while we were in London.
“It won a Tony Award. It’s been running for a long time.” My son later apologized for also going into this performance blind!
Really? This represents America’s best?
However, nothing is wasted.
I tend to live in a Christian cocoon. Rubbing elbows with our post-modern culture is always an eye-opener.
What I found offensive—swearing and overt sexual language—entertained the audience. They lapped up the Jr…
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Are you living in a cave of despair? Going through a physical or emotional trial? Then, you’ll want to read these thoughts from a man who lives with ALS.
Source: A Dispatch From My Cave
Photo credit: Jonathan Foster
Being depressed is like having a bloodsucking leech embedded in my flesh. Drains me physically. Muddles my mind. Squashes spiritual zeal. I can’t seem to detach the ugly thing. Ever been there?
If you want to get technical, the dictionary defines depression as a psychotic state of mind that entails sadness, despondency, hopelessness, inability to think or concentrate, inactivity, and the desire to sleep. The verb, depress, means to lower.
During the winter months, I often feel like I’ve been lowered into a dark hole. A lack of sun and exercise. Rainy days and long nights. Head colds and flu. These all contribute to a seasonal melancholy state of mind. But experience tells me this too shall pass. I know the Lord will lift me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He’ll set my feet on solid ground and steady me as I walk. (Psalm 40:2)
But oh, how I wish the Lord would rush to the rescue sooner, particularly for those I love. Because my ‘depressed spirit’ also resulted from concern and empathizing with so many family members and friends who are suffering far worse than me.
If they were mentioned among the heroes of faith in Hebrews chapter 11, their woes would be listed as such: experienced the death of a child, unemployment, loss of a home, financial devastation, divorce, major surgery, lack of health insurance, life-threatening illness, agonizing chronic pain.
Some of them remind me of Job. Sitting in a heap of ashes.
Begging for mercy. Pleading for answers. Waiting for the storm to pass. Trusting the Lord when everything shouts, “Give up!”
My spiritual mentor and friend, Loretta, once told me, “Trusting God is the most important ingredient in a believer’s life. Because there will be days when we’re in the desert and God appears silent. That’s when we have to trust who God is. And His promises.”
Loretta learned to trust God’s sovereignty early in her marriage. Trusting God—no matter what—proved invaluable and enabled Loretta to cope when her husband died in a plane crash. Instead of becoming a missionary with her husband, as planned, Loretta became the sole breadwinner and single mom of three young kids. Over the next twelve months, three other beloved family members died. Can you imagine the pain?
That living nightmare happened decades ago, and yet, from those ashes, grew a deeper trust in God. Here’s what she said:
“We have the opportunity to choose how we respond during adversity. We either bend and let God work in our lives in order to mold us. Or we resist and lose out on His lessons. Life is full of difficult circumstances. If we believe our circumstances are allowed by God, and that He withholds no good thing from us, then our trust grows and we’re better prepared for the next hard thing. Trust becomes—or can be—a way of life.”
Today, as I emerged from my lethargic fog, I thought about Loretta’s words when I saw the yellow daffodils preening in my yard beneath a blue sky.Last week, these flowers were bent. Beaten down by the cold, pummeling rain. Now, the daffodils stand tall. Their stems stretch heavenward as they soak up the sun. If I close my eyes, I can almost hear them sing. Heralding the coming Spring.
And a small voice whispers in the cool breeze. Trust God even in this….
Rainy Days and Mondays…and I’m sick. Don’t feel like cooking, or writing another post. So here’s one from several years ago that seems appropriate for how I’m feeling. And some of the things I’ve witnessed recently.
“What do you want for dinner?” I asked.
Tired of that question, my husband purchased me a cookbook that resembled an encyclopedia.I scanned its 800 pages and chose an easy recipe. Put softened butter under the skin of two whole chicken breasts, spread vegetable oil on top of the skin, and bake at 450 for 40 minutes.
In addition, I sliced sweet potatoes and roasted them on a cookie sheet in the lower oven while I steamed broccoli. Since I left nothing to chance and double-checked the instructions, I was aghast when I opened the oven door and a trail of smoke ascended into the air. Blackened chicken, still pink on the inside, sizzled in a pool of hot grease that dripped into the oven like lava.
My husband followed his nose to the kitchen and rescued the sweet potatoes stuck to aluminum foil as I dodged splattering grease…
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When I spoke with someone who has cancer, she couldn’t say enough about her husband’s incredible love and sacrificial giving towards her during this difficult time. Her words reminded me of this post which I wrote a few years ago when I was ill on Valentine’s Day.
My smile was short-lived last week.
Flu invaded my body. Out of nowhere, brutal, microscopic creatures brought me to my knees, had me cry, “Uncle!”
Three days disappeared while I slept, smothered beneath blankets. Trust me. I did NOT look like Sleeping Beauty and nobody dared wake me with a kiss.
By the fifth day, the novelty of being sick was over. I longed to enter the sunny world outside my bedroom window, but Flu turned into Bronchitis. Life was in a holding pattern while I waited for good health.
But nothing’s wasted.
While I lay comatose watching a steady dose of classic TV Land reruns, there was a jewelry commercial that told men: “Show your love by giving her a diamond.”
I shook my feverish head.
What does a diamond have to do with LOVE?
Does a bigger diamond mean I love you MORE?
After thirty three years of marriage…
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