Archive | March, 2012

Encouragement

19 Mar

A while back I posted a song sung by Mavis Staples called, “Hard Times Come Again No More”.  It was my sincere hope that the lyrics to that song would be the kick off to the theme of my new year.  But alas it has not been the case.  We have had one hard time after another since January 2012, and I admit, staying encouraged takes a lot of work!

In fact, having faith (especially in tough circumstances) takes a lot of ‘invested and expended energy’…each of those three words, invest-expend-energy- is an action word.  And action equates to work.  Thus faith is work because it is an investment of expended energy.  The reason one has to ‘work’ ones faith is because we have to battle our practical knowledge of life to remain in a place of ‘faith’.  Faith being hopeful of things not seen and reliant (and confident) upon the invisible truth.  And the underlying truth within the meaning of faith is HOPE.  Remaining hopeful when circumstances in life seem to be getting the upper hand.  When we come back up from falling down only to feel as if life is punching us down again.  It is the Hope, in the Faith that keeps one going.  And in order to keep going we need to be encouraged along the way.

Staying encouraged in the depth of our soul–when no one else is looking, when no one else can see and know the thoughts of our mind–is when and where the act of Faith plays its largest role.  It is in those times that we most ‘work’.  And it has just come to me now, as I write, that I have been investing and expending an awful lot of energy in this realm.  Therefore it is no wonder that when I have down time, I want to either sleep or check out.  And one might assume, being life has been so heavy hitting for quite a while now, that I have been deeply committed to reading the word of G-d on a regular basis.  Yet I have not.  I am too tired to read.  I am, most days, too tired to even watch a movie.  Yet rooted in my soul is the knowledge and assurance of the Lord, his word, and my worth in Him.  You could say it is magical, but only in a real spiritual sense.  For there is no mystery here, the Lord has given us His Holy Spirit to comfort us while here.  With that assurance and comfort I stay encouraged…tired, but encouraged none the less.

And as the Lord would have it (the Great Creator of Irony himself), out of one of the harshest (in my opinion) books in the Bible comes a passage that serves as super encouragement, for it reminds us that every day is a new opportunity, a new beginning, a new outlook.  God’s compassion is new every morning, his mercy is new every morning, his faithfulness is new every morning.  Be ye renewed and remain ever hopeful.

Lamentations 3:22-23

 It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.

 They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.

 

Baby Daze

12 Mar

Our oven was repaired this last week.  But before it was, our baby-King did some serious traveling!  He landed in the butter dish.  He was taped to the creamer in the refrigerator.  He was found atop my drinking straw.  He spent the night in our K-cup coffee maker, awaiting the first sleepy person to meander toward the necessary morning “fix”.  He visited the tableware cabinet.  He visited the glassware cabinet.  He spent the night in the silverware drawer.  He spent some time on various artwork.  He was tossed around, washed several times, and discussed with both disdain and laughter (sometimes more disdain than laughter).  His was a true adventure!  And though I can now put his traveling ways behind him, (as the oven is ready for use), his last destination is holding him hostage for a while…the sugar dispenser.

Our baby-King was placed in our vintage, glass with stainless steel– screw-on lid, sugar dispenser…the one Brian uses to add sweetness to his black morning brew.  And even though the baby was placed in this cylindrical crystal-like cage when the granules of sugar were extremely low, making for a very visible baby-King, Brian somehow missed his presence.   Thus our “savior” is stuck under a heap of refined sucrose until Brian’s cumulative daily cup-o-Joe can finally release him from his present suppression.

He will rise again, make no mistake of it…and we will be here waiting for him when this momentous occasion does occur!

Going The Distance

9 Mar

Do you know what going the distance truly means?  It means, making it through (what ever “through” happens to be) when the adrenaline spike is no longer assisting your stamina.  It means, remaining joyful when the dopamine and serotonin levels in the brain have dropped as a result of the biological crisis mode switching to off.  It means, not just finishing the race (life), but living in such a way that you know finishing is happening.  Which in essence is, the ability to make it through the “normals”.

Was that too abstract a thought for anyone to follow?  I apologize if the answer to my question is “yes”.  But for me, tonight, I feel the pains of “going the distance.”  And tonight, “the pain”  happens to be, the practice of flushing out the thoughts of doubt that are trying to creep into my head.  That are trying to cause me to give up, that are lying to me by way of manipulative, passive aggressive tactic.  The reason I feel pain is that my emergency strength, otherwise known as adrenaline, has called it quits for the day.  So I am left to my own “normal” ability to recall lessons learned, and left to my own “normal” desire to remain fixated on past encouragements rooted in truth.  I am also having to–key phrase here–put into practice what I know to be true and right…even when I want to walk away and bury my head in the sand.  All of which take a level of commitment I’m sometimes unsure I naturally posses.  You see, “going the distance” has somewhat of an athletic team-like connotation.  I was a dancer, not a sportsman(woman).  I understand hard workouts and focused practices, but not distance.  Our routines were, at most, 10 minute increments–maybe fifteen.  I played singles tennis…never doubles.  It was fast paced achievement or hard earned defeat, never distance.  Thus I can assure you, I feel pain when pushing forward, pressing on toward the goal, and keeping my eye fixed on the prize.

So tonight, I am going the distance.  And where ever you are, and whatever your “through” happens to be, I hope you will, along with my tired self, go the distance too.

…thank you for listening (or reading really).

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