No paper or plastic

IMG_20150103_172451138When Bob and I were engaged to be married, I decided to register for stoneware and stainless rather than fine china and silver.  Some may have called that “common”; I prefer to call it practical.  Even so, for years I would store my special dishes in the corner hutch and bring them out only for special occasions; c’mon, ladies, you know how we do. 

Finally, after about 35+ years of collecting dust, I decided this was actually kinda dumb.  Why not use the good stuff on a daily basis?!  Are we not worth it? Good grief, it’s dishwasher safe anyway! (Unlike the fine china of the 70’s, I might add.)

SoooOO000ooo….not too long ago, out of the hutch and into the kitchen it came to be lovingly used along with the stainless Continue reading “No paper or plastic”

How shall I worship You today?

wood 2

How shall I worship You today?

            To bandage another skinned knee—

            Or listen to the story of the dead bird on the driveway…again?

How shall I worship You today?

            By having the emotional courage to change another diaper,

            Cook another meal, or fold another load of laundry?

How shall I worship You today?

             In holding the wrinkled hand with so little time left,

             Or by changing the tire on my neighbor’s car?

How shall I worship You today?

            By living and loving in the moment, instead of in the past—

            Or by patiently trusting You for the future?

Show me how You want me to worship You today.

 

 

Forever? Really?

IMG_20150103_172451138Were you even one of those fortunate few who had to suffer through the school-age disciplinary action—because that sounds better than the word “punishment”—of writing “I will listen to the teacher” one hundred times?  (I never had that one, but I did have after school detention one time in high school for being late to class three times.  Thanks, mom, for not even wondering why I had to stay after school—bless your heart!)

I suppose the impact of such a literary consequence has something to do with the monotony of the assignment, which to me would be punishment enough, (low boredom threshold, this one), but we’re told there is also something interestingly significant about the neural connection between the hand and the head.  Evidently, when we write something, it tends to stick in our grey matter more efficiently, and can cause behavioral changes accordingly, (or perhaps in my case, to avoid the tedium of a repeat assignment…)

Monotony notwithstanding, I’m intrigued by the writer of this particular psalm.  Going through a history lesson of God working for Israel, twenty-six times he drives home this point:

“…His faithful love endures forever.”

It reminds me of a story about a minister who preached the same sermon three or four times in a row.  After about the third time, his parishioners began asking him when he was going to change his sermon and move on, to which the response was, “When the congregation starts doing what I said.”

Brilliant.

So I’m thinking God Almighty was more concerned about getting this particular message across than He was about creative style, in that surely, confidently, and without fail in all circumstances,

“…His faithful love endures forever.”

In the midst of my confusion and my disappointment and my pain:

“…His faithful love endures forever.”

When the loved one turns away:

“…His faithful love endures forever.”

When the company closes it doors, and the retirement check stops coming:

“…His faithful love endures forever.”

When the uniformed army officer arrives unexpectedly at your front door:

“…His faithful love endures forever.”

When the lab results are not good:

“…His faithful love endures forever.”

I’m sure we could all come up with our own list of twenty-six, but what is more important is going back through our own history with God, like this psalmist did, and recount when we actually experienced His faithfulness.  I know I benefit from those “oh yeah!” moments that I tend to relegate to the cranial archives.

scribbling-152216_1280Maybe I should start writing them out again, one at a time, each followed by, you guessed it:

“…His faithful love endures forever.”

Psalm 136  Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Check the connection.

wood 2The other morning at church we were doing a “fewer-piece” worship set; I say “we” because it was just me and the piano player, which is a bit unusual for our congregation.  During practice I called back to the sound booth that I couldn’t hear Dan in the stage monitor.  Then I thought to check his mic, and (typical for me) it wasn’t turned on.  It was plugged in, but still not connected to the power source.  Duh.  (We have patient sound people.)

Kind of like attending church, if you think about it.

I’m all about being a part of a local church, whatever that may look like to different assemblies.  Some sit in pews, some under trees.  Some worship with guitars and djembes, some with organs and pianos.  The point has to do with spiritual Continue reading “Check the connection.”