Monthly Archives: April 2014

Easter Morning and A Sand Dollar

SandDollarOf all the mornings of each year, Easter is my favorite.  This Easter morning was especially glorious.  My husband and I attended a service with our son at a lake shore.  The sun rising over the lake was beautiful.  We faced the sun, and I closed my eyes, reveling in the sun’s warmth on my face and the sound of birds singing around us.

In those quiet moments with my eyes closed and my heart worshipping the Risen Savior, I became aware of some light in my lower right vision.  The light formed a star shape.  Then I noticed four white spokes radiating from the star.  Insight dawned – the light on the dark screen of my mind had produced the image of a Sand Dollar.

There is a legend that says this shell tells the story of the birth and death of Jesus.   There are four nails holes and a fifth hole made by the Roman’s spear to remind us He is the Lamb of God who was sacrificed that we might be forgiven and have everlasting life.  On one side of the shell there is an Easter lily with a star at it’s center, reminding us of the Star of Bethlehem that announced His birth.  On the other side of the shell, there is a Christmas poinsettia that also reminds us of His birthday. Inside the shell are five white doves, reminding us of the Holy Spirit, who is given by Jesus to each believer to empower him or her to share this life changing good news.

Risen, Glorious Lord Jesus, thank You for the beautiful ways You reveal the truth to us and tell us Your Story, including the lovely  Sand Dollar.

 

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The Prayer Bank

“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.  And if we know that he hears us – whatever we ask – we know that we have what we asked of him.” I John 5:14-15

I had been faithfully praying for one of the deepest desires of my heart, one of my fondest dreams.  I was confident that this prayer was according to God’s will, and so I was confident that the answer was yes, confident the fulfillment was just a matter of time.

Then my dream suddenly crashed and crumbled.  I was disappointed and disillusioned.  I was tempted to quit praying, especially for this particular dream.     God’s spirit ministered to me through the words of Joy Dawson:  “Be encouraged;  no prayer has been wasted.  All prayers are safe in God’s prayer bank and will be cashed in His perfect time…What God starts and energizes, He completes.  It’s His vision and burden.” *  I decided not to give up!

The Holy Spirit also gave me this thought:  The current events could actually be part of  the fulfillment of your request of God.   Now that was a thought to further strengthen my resolve.

I know from personal experience that God tears down to rebuild from the ground up, like He had my marriage (see my story on the book page of this website).  Sometimes dreams have to die and be re-created according to God’s specifications to become beautiful in His perfect time.

This spring I choose to believe that my prayer hasn’t been denied but is in process.  I will wait expectantly, anticipating the thing of beauty God will re-build.

Father God,  I thank You for hearing every one of my prayers and depositing them safely in Your bank.  I praise You for wounding in order to heal, for tearing down to rebuild. You are Good.

*from Intercession, Thrilling and Fulfilling

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New Beginnings

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This blog is dedicated to The One I love.  The One who makes all things new.  The Author of springtime, new mornings, and new beginnings.

Long ago that Author resurrected my marriage one Easter morning. ( You can read my story on the book page of this website.)   Before He could renew my relationship with my husband, a stone needed to be rolled away.  It was a large, heavy stone, a boulder really.  That massive blockage was resentment, and the force essential to removing it was forgiveness.

I approach this Easter with another relationship that is at risk for death without forgiveness.  Although I have apologized and asked to be forgiven, the person I hurt has not extended forgiveness.

Now I struggle with regret which is made worse by my desire to be perfect, my delusion that if I just try hard enough, if I do all the right things, I can be perfect.  I can endlessly obsess over what I did.  Why did I do that?  How could I have been so stupid?  If only I hadn’t done that.  If only I could live that day over.  If only, if only, if only, and the regret  strangles my joy.

I have always found it easier to forgive others than to forgive myself.   Perhaps the ability to accept God’s forgiveness, to embrace it, and to start over is dependent on my forgiving myself, the way God forgives me.

I think that before I can grieve the loss of this relationship and move forward,  I am going to have to forgive myself and get over being imperfect.

Lately, The One who makes all things new, has been reminding me of some great advice from the apostle Paul.  “But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining forward toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”                   (Philippians 3: 13 & 14)

Lord Jesus, thank you for forgiving me.  Please give me grace to forgive myself, to leave the past with its regrets behind, and to strain forward for what lies ahead.  Let me let you love me and let me let you restore me. Amen

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