Friday, May 30, 2008

Hi, We will be moving next week and part of the move is being off line. So enjoy this weeks post and I will post a new blog on June 13. Remember to celebrate each day, Mary


Please look this scripture up and read the whole text. Quoted are verses 1, 4, 5, 7 and 11

1. Now about spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be ignorant. 4. There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 7. Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 11. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines.


Before you read this, I want you to go into your kitchen and get as many different spoons as you can find. Go ahead. I will wait.

Good you are back. Now lay those spoons out in front of you. Look at them. Really look. Are they all the same? Do they all have the same purpose? After all, they are all spoons.

I can see you shaking your head. Maybe wondering why in the world you bothered to get the spoons. You know they are spoons. You know they are different. Pick up a spoon from your best silverware. What do you use it for? Now pick up a slotted serving spoon. How do you use it? Did you also get a big cooking spoon? You know, the one you use to stir noodles with. Did you grab a measuring spoon? A wooden spoon? Did you pick up specialty spoons: Sugar? Soup? Grapefruit? Iced tea?

Lay the spoons all out again. Look at them. They are all spoons. But they each have a different use. You could not use that little teaspoon to stir a big pot of soup. The big cooking spoon would not fit in the neck of a spice jar to measure 1/4 teaspoon. And you could not use the slotted spoon to put gravy over the mashed potatoes. Those spoons, each different, are like Christians.

God has a special and unique purpose for each of His children. Some Christians are specialist. They know how to pray. Really good prayers. Or they can run the sound system, without one tiny squeal. Or they are powerful preachers or teachers. Some Christians can handle big projects like building churches. Organizing the retreats. Raising money. Some Christians can go into homes and help cook and clean, when someone is ill or needs extra help. Some Christians sit in the pew on Sunday morning. Some Christians celebrate Sunday morning by sitting in the woods. Some are on committees. Some go to Bible Study and some read quietly at home. Some Christians have time to volunteer and some Christians are busy guiding their families on God's path.

Here's the thing -- Each spoon has a use. How would you work in the kitchen if all the spoons were the same? Each Christian has a use. How would God's work be done if all Christians were exactly alike?


Do you ever feel like you are less important than someone else because they seem to do "big" things? Do you ever feel uncomfortable when the Christian work you do is used as an example to others? As you put the spoons away, do you realize that God has a special use for you?

Please use this as a beginning of your prayer. Finish in your own words, words from your heart.


Father God, Thank you for trusting us to do your work on earth. Give us the wisdom to accept the talents and gifts you have given and use them as YOU want them to be used. Help us to put aside our human condition of comparing ourselves to others and follow your path for our lives. … Amen

Thursday, May 22, 2008



God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: 'I AM has sent me to you.' " God also said to Moses, "Say to the Israelites, "The Lord, the God of your fathers -- the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob -- has sent me to you.' This is my name forever, the name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation."


Our local library is celebrating 100 years. The library stated small, on the back porch of a member of the Women's Club. Small, but a beginning. The library moved to a larger building and then, thanks to an extremely generous gift, to the spacious building we have now. I am on the committee planning the events to celebrate these 100 years of serving the community.

As part of the celebration, we are featuring various patrons and I interviewed three generations of a family that reads. And I do mean read. Two brothers started keeping track of the books they have read since they retired. Gene, 90, has read over 500 books and he does not count magazines. Max, 86, has read 2,119 books. Gene's daughter Cathie and grandson Cory, each say they have read thousands. I told you this family likes to read.

I figured each interview would take 15-20 minutes. Was I ever wrong! Each lasted for over an hour. As I compared notes, from the different interviews, the thread between the generations could clearly be seen. Although Gene and Max were not read to as children and, admit they did not read to their children, they both told about reading to their grandchildren. Cory talked about the influence of seeing a grandfather read. Cathie read to her children every time they had a spare minute and now Cory has widened the reading circle to include his wife.

Gene and Max both served in WW II and they read about the war. Some things should never be forgotten and those books remind us that our freedom to read comes with a price.

I am glad I had the opportunity to interview three generations. Then I got to thinking. What am I passing on to the next generation? And the next? Our scripture says, "I AM WHO I AM. …the name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation."


What have you received from and what are you passing on to: The "older" generation? Those your own age? The next generation? (Remember, generation includes everyone, not just your family.)

Please use this as a beginning of your prayer. Finish in your own words, words from your heart.


Dear I AM, From generation to generation, You are. You are the God of my faith fathers. The God of the generation before me. You are my God and You are the God of the generations after me. Give me wisdom and direction so I can pass the blessing of knowing the great I AM to all generations. …… Amen

Thursday, May 15, 2008

(You are not confused. I posted this Thursday evening instead of Friday morning. Have a great weekend.)


(To the church in Thyatira) I know your deeds, your love and faith, your service and perseverance, and that you are now doing more than you did at first.


As I write this, it is a very dreary day. Rain. A little foggy. Cold and damp. I wonder where spring is, but we have not had extreme, devastating weather conditions so I am not going to complain. I cannot imagine what it is like to see your home blown away, washed away, reduced to rubble from an earthquake or covered with volcanic ash. My prayers go out to each person that, in an instant, now faces unexpected challenges in their future.

When I started to write, I could not think of anything. Then I looked over and saw my adding machine. Don't know what I would do without that machine. I use it for our office work, keeping books balanced, and I use it at auctions, keeping track of how much bidders have spent. I enter numbers. The numbers are printed on the tape and then, when I press that total key, the adding machine gives me a balance. Just like that, I can see if the balance is good or bad. If it is a positive balance or a negative balance.

Little bit like our faith life. Can you picture one of God's office workers adding up your deeds? Your love? Your faith? Your service? Your perseverance?

As I look at the adding machine, I wonder how my faith tape will look. What will show when the total key is pressed?

I can almost hear the office worker telling God about my week, "She was doing pretty good. As you can see, we added in a few good deeds, some love and service. Then she fell behind in her Bible Study and I had to subtract one. I did add in one for faith because she believed your word instead of what a newspaper article was saying. But then she lost her temper, again, and I subtracted three. Yes, God, she is asleep now, so I will keep a sharp eye on her tomorrow. And I will say a prayer for her. She needs it."

My favorite part of today's scripture is "and that you are now doing more than you did at first." Faith is like that. As faith grows, you do more. You just want to!


Think about this last week. How do your deeds add up? Your love? Faith? Service? Perseverance? When you add all your positive actions and subtract all the oh-my-gosh-I-cannot-believe-I-did-that actions, what will your balance for the week be?

Please use this as a beginning of your prayer. Finish in your own words, words from your heart.


Hello God, I come before you with a grateful heart. Grateful that I have opportunities to do good deeds, in your name. The opportunity to show love to others. The opportunity to stand firm in my faith. I will persevere. I will do more as my faith continues to grow. ……………… Amen

Friday, May 09, 2008



Bezalel made the ark of acacia wood - two and a half cubits long, a cubit and a half wide, and a cubit and a half high. He overlaid it with pure gold, both inside and out, and made a gold molding around it. He cast four gold rings for it and fastened them to its four feet, with two rings on one side and two rings on the other. Exodus 37:1-3

(At the evening meal) so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples' feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him. John 13:4-5


Can you imagine being picked to make the Ark of the Covenant? Last week I told you about the simple cup I painted and the Lord gave Bezalel the skill to build the ark. Out of acacia wood and gold. Wow. I would have said, "You want me to do what?"

Other workers were given the skill to sew priestly garments. Ephod made of blue, purple and scarlet yarn. And of gold. They hammered thin sheets of gold and cut strands to be worked into the yarn. Now that is talent. I would have said, "You want me to do what?"

There were specific men who were in charge of recording names. I know why, today, we have simple names like Mary. How would you like the job of recording all those names and genealogical records?

We learn, in the Old Testament that God had a job for everyone. All those men with those strange names had assigned job. Some were priests. Some were temple musicians and some were gatekeepers. Some were carriers of the tent poles and some were in charge of the oil. Some kept track of the flour, the spices and some kept track of the wine. Some were responsible for counting the 5,400 articles of gold and silver. All very important jobs.

Since this weekend is Mother's Day, I want all mothers to look at the work you do. Do you enjoy the big jobs where you get the pats on the back: Directing the class play? Hosting the most amazing birthday parties? Always being the highest seller on those way-to-often fundraisers? Do you like that part of being a mother?

What about changing diapers? Washing the clothes that seem to multiply in the never-find-the-bottom hamper? Fixing macaroni and cheese, again? Repeating, for the nine millionth time, "Get down from the top of the cabinet."?

Mothers -- not everyone can direct the play. Not everyone can afford those elaborate birthday parties for two year olds. And not everyone can come in first. AND IT DOES NOT MATTER.

As a mother, the most important work you can do is to take care of the day-to-day needs (not wants) of your children. Find a way to realize your worth. Understand that a clean bottom and fixing macaroni and cheese are important. Understand that you might never receive a standing ovation for doing laundry or making sure that your child does not fall from the top of the cabinet.

By the way, Bezalel built the ark, but Jesus washed the feet of his disciples. Whose name do you remember?


What do you consider the most important part of raising children? Are you a mother who wants to be noticed? Or are you the mother cleaning up the mess made by the tree who got nervous right before she went on stage?

Please use this as a beginning of your prayer. Finish in your own words, words from your heart.


Dear Lord, So often I say, "You want me to do what?" And I get tired of doing laundry again. And again. And shopping. And cleaning. And reading that one favorite book over and over. Sometimes I would just like to yell, "Wake up kids. How do you think that clean laundry got in your drawer? And yes, I found your other shoe after you went to bed. Can you be more responsible?" Being a mother is so day-to-day. Everyday. But then a small hand is placed in mine. Or I see the twinkle in their eyes. Or I hear the laughter. Thank you God for allowing me to be a mother to your children. Teach me to read the Bible to find strength and inspiration. Enrich my faith so, with wisdom, I can tell your story. I am blessed. My name is Mother. ……… Amen

Monday, May 05, 2008


Before you read today's blog, I have a question. Did you read the blog for last week and then try the exercise? Did you take a newspaper or magazine and then use your Bible to find scriptures that fit the article or ad? Let me know how it turned out. --- Mary


Yet, O Lord, you are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hands.


Last Saturday, Nathan and I painted pottery. We went to a pottery shop and looked at all the items on the shelves. Did we want to paint a bowl? Or a plate? How about a trivet? Picking something to paint almost takes as long as painting the piece.

Finally, Nathan decided on a bank for his daddy. Not a piggy bank, but a kitten bank. I picked out a coffee cup. A tall one, with a big handle that my knuckles will fit through. (Bless my mother. She left me restless legs and arthritis in my knuckles.) We then picked out colors and began painting.

We sat across the table from each other and put on the first coat. Then two more.

Nathan decorated the ears, nose and eyes. He wrote, "Love you" and put on whiskers. He did not think it looked like the colors he had picked out, but the owner assured him that when the piece was fired, it would be bright and the inside of the ears would be a nice pink.

I painted mine a soft cream and then added a vine with yellow and red flowers. I even put flowers inside so when the coffee is gone I will see a bright yellow flower looking back at me. Huh, maybe I should have put an eye, but I am not that good. Believe me; the designs have to be simple.

This is the third time I have painted pottery, with one of the grandkids, and I do enjoy it. There is something about sitting there, painting and talking. Admiring and talking. Helping pick out colors and talking. Did you pick up on the talking part? I cannot tell you what we talked about. We just talked as we painted. Sometimes we just painted, in comfortable silence.

Then we were done. Then it was time to wait. It will be this weekend before the pieces will be fired and ready to pick up. I cannot wait to see how they turned out. Will Nathan like the color he picked out for the kitten? Will the eyes be exactly as he wanted them?

Will I like my cup? Will the vines be the correct shade of green and will those simple flowers make me smile? Will I enjoy holding the cup as I drink my morning coffee or have a cup of tea while reading a good book?

I wonder if that is how God feels as he watches me. God created me to be one of his children. He gave my eyes their color. He knows the number of hairs on my head. As he waits, does he wonder how I will turn out when I go through the fire, through troubles? Will they make me stronger? Will they make me reach for His hand?

As he waits, does he wonder how I will turn out when I go through the good times? Will the good times also make me stronger? Will they also make me reach for His hand?


Are you artistic? Do you paint? Take exceptional pictures? Scrapbook? Garden? Write? Write music? Sing? Dance? Cook? Bake cakes? Pies? Arrange flowers? Tell intriguing stories? The list of how you can create is unending. As you are creating, do you wonder how it will turn out when you are finished?

Do you realize that you are a creation of God's and that He is waiting to see how you will turn out?

Please use this as a beginning of your prayer. Finish in your own words, words from your heart.


My Creator, Thank you for creating me. I know that I see my flaws and you see my beauty. I know that I get impatient with life and you are waiting to see if life will lead me to you. Let me travel through the fire and reach for your hand to help me through. Let me travel through the joys and reach for your hand so I can share them with you. … Amen

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Greetings, I would like you to know that my computer has the spring flu. Please check back Tuesday as the doctor says there should be a full recovery by then.
Have a great day,