Friday, October 29, 2010



They were terrified and asked each other, "Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!" Mark 4:41

But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. James 1:6


We had high winds this week. Tornado warnings. School children sitting in the halls. Hospitals moving patients to safety. From my kitchen window, I saw a few leaves blowing and a bit of wind. "What is all the fuss about?" I wondered.

Then my husband called and told me barns were blown over and roofs were coming off buildings. Now I knew what all the fuss was about.

How wonderful a breeze is on a hot sticky day. How frightening the wind is on a day when trees fall. Or, as the disciples feared, when waves could sink ships.

The disciples were amazed that Jesus could make the wind obey. What gives here? Would they never get it? They were with Jesus and they were still surprised! They asked, "Who is this?"

Are we any different? We are tossed around, waves of life washing over us, and we say, "Jesus, where are you?" Then Jesus comes and lifts us off our knees. We are then like the disciples and say, "Who is this that can calm the winds in my life."

Will we always ask, "Who is this?"


Where and to whom do you turn when the high winds blow through your life? Do you find the calm after the storm?



LET US PRAY (Please use this as a beginning of your prayer. Finish in your own words, words from your heart.)

Dear One who the winds obey, Strengthen my belief so I am not tossed here and there by the winds and the waves of life. Remove all doubt so I do not ask, "Who is this?" Remove all doubt and make my belief so strong I say, "This is Jesus, my Lord and Savior, the Son of God. He died for my sins. He lives for all of us. This is Jesus Christ who can calm the winds of my life and the waves that threaten my soul.

When the gentle breeze or the high winds blow, let me always say, "I am safe with the one who the wind and waves obey." Amen and Amen

Friday, October 22, 2010



Isaiah 50:4 - The Sovereign Lord has given me an instructed tongue, to know the word that sustains the weary. He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like one being taught.

Ephesians 5:13-15 - But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for it is light that makes everything visible. This is why it is said: "Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you." Be very careful, then, how you live - not as unwise, but as wise.



Each morning I wake up with God, but I wondered what it would be like to have God wake me up.

"Good Morning," God would gently whisper in my ear. "Mary. Mary, it is time to wake up. Mary, can you hear me? Are your ears awake?"

God continues, "Today I want you to really listen. And look, because today you have much to learn. With every step you take, there will be a light shining. That light will shine so everything - EVERYTHING - will be visible."

"Today, Mary, I want you to live, not as a dead spirit just going through your day, but with the light of Christ shining on you. Mary, wake up. Listen. Learn. Be wise. Walk in the light of Christ."

"Now go have your coffee."

Wouldn't that be a great way to wake up? I especially like the ending where He tells me to go have a cup of coffee. That shows God understands me and knows how I like to start my day.


What would God say to you? Do you go through the day as a dead spirit? Has God ever given you wisdom, just when you needed it: The right words to say? The energy to accomplish a task? Compassion for another? Patience?

God would tell me to have coffee. God does know you! How would He tell you to start your day?

LET US PRAY (Please use this as a beginning of your prayer. Finish in your own words, words from your heart.)

Good morning God, I enjoy the quiet as I wake up because I know the day will become hectic. So many days, I do not find time for you. That is hard to admit, but today wake my ears so I may listen and be taught. Expose everything so I may wake up, listen and live wise. I do not want to go through one more day or one more minute with a dead spirit. I want to arise, say, "Good morning God.", lift my hands and have the light of Christ shine on me. Amen

Thursday, October 14, 2010



"As I looked, thrones were set in place, and the Ancient of Days took his seat. His clothing was as white as snow; the hair of his head was white like wool. His throne was flaming with fire, and its wheels were all ablaze. A river of fire was flowing, coming out from before him. Thousands upon thousands attended him; ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him. The court was seated, and the books were opened."


Now that is some description. Doesn't it just take your breath away? And calling God, Ancient of Days. I must have missed that before, because when that term came up in a Bible Study I about fell off my chair. Ancient of Days. Wow!

So much for making God, the friendly God that joins us at the kitchen table when we study and pray. Sometimes we try to make God way too human. Sometimes we forget God is GOD. Ancient of Days.

Those are the thoughts I had at the Bible Study. On Tuesdays, I pray at our church. Actually, I journal because when I try to pray my mind wonders, but when I journal my thoughts are a bit more coherent. The following is from my journal.


Ancient of Days - That is how you are called in Daniel 7:9. I really like that. How many names do you have? What is your favorite? What fun it will be to learn from You and be able to ask you questions.

This isn't exactly what I had planned, but now my mind is going crazy with questions:

Do you have a favorite color?

Sunrise or sunset?

Mountains or beaches?

What song is your favorite?

Which Scripture?

What do you most like to hear people pray for?

Do you ever get tired of us asking for the same thing?

Back to the favorite name - Your children call you by so many names. Which name do you like to hear? I AM? God? Father? Lord? Ancient of Days?

Have we been unbearable at times? (Bet I know the answer to that one.)

Do we make you laugh?

You never sleep or take a vacation. Don't you get tired?

How did you come up with such interesting places?

And leaves turning color. Great idea.

How do you hear so many prayers at once?

What was it like in heaven the night Jesus was born?

Did you enjoy watching Jesus as a boy?

Did you ever help his saw cut straight?

Keep him from falling?

How did you stand to see Your Son on the cross?

Were the angels surrounding you with prayers?

How did you feel when he ascended?

Ancient of Days I will stop. How glorious it will be to -- How glorious it will be to have no more questions. How glorious it will be to say, "Ancient of Days, Thank you for all you have given me."

Later, Mary


Hey, I didn't say my written thoughts were coherent, just a bit more coherent. That day, I just wrote what popped into my little mind. Wonder what God thought as He listened?


Do you journal? Sometimes it helps to concentrate. What "silly" question would you like to ask God?


Today write a letter to God or just talk to Him. Not about the big stuff. Just a fun conversation. Use words from your heart and talk to the Ancient of Days.

Friday, October 08, 2010


I love chapter 38 of Job. I turn to this chapter and read it when I am feeling smug. When I feel a bit on the proud side. All I have to do is read this chapter and my feet and the size of my ego are right back where they belong: Feet on the ground and ego human size.


Then the Lord answered Job out of the storm. He said: "Who is this that darkens my counsel with words without knowledge? Brace yourself like a man: I will question you, and you shall answer me."


Can you picture Job, when God says, "Brace yourself."? I have a feeling his shoulders drooped, his head lowered and his eyes were full of fear.

After God got Job's attention, he continued, "Where were you when I laid the earth's foundation? Tell me, if you understand." Verse 4

God didn't stop there. He came back with, "Have you ever given orders to the morning, or shown the dawn its place, that it might take the earth by the edges and shake the wicked out of it?" Verses 12 and 13

By now Job had to be shaking in his sandals. God kept it up: Do you know? Can you? Who? When? Have you? Who provides? God kept questioning Job in Chapters 38, 39, 40 and 41. Can you hear his voice sometimes loud? Sometimes sarcastic, as in 38:18, "Have you comprehended the vast expanses of the earth? Tell me, if you know all this."

Job's mind had to be turning a mile a minute. His thoughts had to bouncing around like a super bouncy ball. Why? -- I was blameless and upright. -- I lost everything. -- I didn't blame God. -- Okay, maybe a bit. -- Maybe I shouldn't have asked for my accuser to face me. -- And all the advice I have been getting. Oh, why did I listen to them?

When God finished, Job understood the reason for his suffering. Everything had happened so he would have complete faith. Job realized he had spoken of things he did not understand and things too wonderful for him to know. He told God, "My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you. Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes."


Have you ever read these chapters? Will God question us also? Are you ready to hear, "Brace yourself."?

LET US PRAY (Please use this as a beginning of your prayer. Finish in your own words, words from your heart. Have a conversation with our Glorious God.)

Dear God, These chapters, in Job, are very powerful. "Brace yourself" makes me smile when I think of Job being told off by God. They do not make me smile when I think about my own actions. Many times you have given me "brace yourself" moments. They always happen when I am being stubborn and trying to do things without knowledge. Do things my way. That is when I get a "Well have you made the sunshine? Were you even there? No? Then why are you feeling so sure of yourself?" God, if you tested me, to the degree you tested Job, would I still be honest before you? Would I still be strong? Or would I fail? Oh how I hate those "brace yourself" moments. They mean I have not been doing God's will. BUT, Lord, I also love them, because they mean you are giving me the knowledge I need to grow and go forward. Go forward to complete faith. Amen

Friday, October 01, 2010



I am getting my blog written later than normal, but that seems to be par for this week. Monday and Tuesday were routine. Catch up the laundry, weekend mail and deciding that, although I keep the house picked up, it was time to clean. A friend has told me, "If you leave dust alone, it is fine. But once you disturb it, it becomes dangerous." That is a good theory, but the dust on my dining room table now has my name written in it. For sure, I cannot get away with dusting around the edges this time.

Wednesday, with every intention of getting a days cleaning in, started out fine. I began in the office which shouldn't have taken that long. Until I found a couple of things that needed put into the supply cabinet. To get them into the cabinet - Well, let's just say that the supply cabinet is now clean and orderly. Then, I received an email from our son saying, "Meet me for lunch." So I fixed my hair, changed my clothes and met him for lunch. After lunch I did not have enough time to start cleaning before going to a funeral. I told myself, "Mary, you can clean after the funeral."

I finished the office and started in the laundry area. Not a very big area. An entryway off the garage with the washer, dryer and a freezer. Just the perfect project to finish the day. That was until I needed to move some cleaning supplies into the garage. Well, let's just say that the cleaning supply cabinet is now as clean and orderly as the office supply cabinet. Then Bill came home.

Wednesday cleaning completed: one and one-half rooms. But tomorrow was Thursday!!!

Thursday I started right in and was almost done with the laundry area when Bill came home and said, "They don't need me in the field today, so how about we meet our friends for lunch?" So instead of cleaning, we drove an hour and half (each way) to eat lunch. And I had Bible Study Thursday evening so --

Thursday cleaning completed: one-half room. But today is Friday!!!

And I am sitting here writing my blog.

Why have I told you all this? A long way around the barn to say that this is how sin enters our lives.

I have every good intention of never swearing again. I will finish that thank you letter. I will: There are so many things that can go after I will and I will not. For some of us, it is "I will not take one more drink." and for others it is "I will pray daily."

And each time there seems to be something pulling us in the other direction. That something is ole Satan. Satan does not want us to quit drinking. He does not want us to pray. He does not want us to treat each other with respect. But he does want us to move further and further away from God.

My cleaning has not gotten done because one thing kept leading to another. Satan will find a cabinet for you to clean or a lunch to go to. Satan will lead you from one thing to another so you do not have time to clean up your life. Satan will lead you from one thing to another so you do not have time for God.


ROMANS 7: parts of verses 17-25 -- Taken from The Message, by Eugene H. Peterson

For if I know the law but still can't keep it, and if the power of sin within me keeps sabotaging my best intentions, I obviously need help! I realize that I don't have what it takes. I can will it, but I can't do it. I decide to do good, but I don't really do it; I decide not to do bad, but then I do it anyway. The moment I decide to do good, sin is there to trip me up. Is there no one who can do anything for me?

The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all my heart and mind, but am pulled by the influence of sin to do something totally different.


How does Satan lead you from one thing to another and keep you from growing closer to God?

LET US PRAY (Please use this as a beginning of your prayer. Finish in your own words, words from your heart.)

Thank you Jesus for being there to help me stay on a true course. I do need help because I am guilty of wanting to do right and slipping back into old habits. Time and time again I turn away but I seem to leave just enough of myself open to Satan that he finds a way to lead me back to the path I just left. I can be so easily distracted. Be patient with me, dear Jesus. I am moving closer and closer to you, sometimes with giant leaps and sometimes with baby steps. Amen