Lord as I read the scripture I am immediately confronted by a very uncomfortable thought. The story says you sold them, the people of Israel into slavery.
Lord it seems good came out of bad which seems to be a chapter and verse out of my own life, help me to put my life, desires and ambitions into perspective.
Thank you Lord for the Psalmist who continually causes me to focus, to identify the unnecessary things in my life. At the same time please keep me focused as greed, self centeredness, thievery, dominance, roam the streets around me. Keep me not only safe but stedfast.
Lord the prophet talks about a certain kind of retribution. This is scary stuff as I consider my own shortcomings. Yet since beginning this latest part of the journey a spirit of confidence has traveled alongside me. The disease which has plagued me seems to have settled down. At the same time the effects of this disease and the “healer’s hand” has now become the primary area of battle. Allow me to know the difference between retribution and suffering as a way of ministry. Continue to give me the confidence to be your servant.
Lord there are times when I think my sin is ever before me. There are times when I think the refiner’s fire may be the ultimate goal. Then I see the vision of a pure soul, cleansed and made whole. You do not count my sins to destroy me but rather to cleanse me to give me the opportunity for a fresh start. Because of that I can begin to believe I live in a broken world, not judge it, not condemn it, but serve you by serving this world. There is clarification, there is a renewed focus, there is an understanding that not all interruptions are unnecessary.
Lord I am building an awareness that my task today is to be an encourager, an enabler, not of lesser ways but ways of being a builder. In the words of Jesus to simply take the talents given and use them appropriately.
Be glorified in all that is said and done. AMEN
So often I wake up on Sunday Morning singing or laughing, or my mind is racing with thousands of thoughts. This morning when I woke up my mind was irritated. NOW WHAT came the imaginary voice bouncing between my ears. The heart monitor-where is it? What am I going to do with that phone call? I should return it. The computer screen is still broken and the Chrome book doesn’t let me store to the desktop. I can’t even find the desktop. Constant interruptions.
Go ahead Carl I dare you came the voice. Start at the top work your way to the bottom, see what happens.
So I got out of bed, went to the computer and began.
Your attitude is rotten, change it said the voice. If I have to listen to you make it at least somewhat tolerable!
So I thought, MUSIC, I need music! I landed on a song it is a simple song. It is well with my soul. Then I remembered how as a child in Minnesota to escape the yelling and screaming in the house I would go sit in the field. No one was there except me and the animals. An old building once stood there, time, wear and tear had left only enough bricks to form a corner to protect me from the wind. I sat there by the hour contemplating, thinking about anything they gave my mind a reprieve. Sometimes I forgot I was outside and when I finally went home I had to sit on the register to heat up.
This is not going to help I said to myself. What are you going to write about.
Already my mind, my spirit had been softened. Music does that to me. Get focused Carl. The voice was unrelenting. Then out of nowhere the voice came, said “remember when” then disappeared just as quickly. I remembered the morning after. I was convinced that morning was not going to happen. I had failed. Life was not going to end. I was going to have to face another day. The voice simply said today is another day.
I had told God to go to hell. I had said take your church and all that b.s. with you. I laid down and knew nothing mattered anymore, I just didn’t care. Then I woke up.
I discovered I did care. I discovered it did matter. I discovered I mattered.
So once again I found myself delivered from what would have been a negative path.
The Scripture reading shares a number of negative thoughts. As I read them today I sat back and allowed the words to roam my mind, heart and soul. There indeed has been a lot of negative yet it was not the negative thoughts that dominated. It was the good that had come out of the bad. It was the direction and focus that came out of chaos. It was permission to say yes to an alternative thought and action.
Once again my mind roamed back to my childhood. I remember laying in bed looking out the window. The night sky bright with stars. In between the stars was black. I wondered if each of those dark spots actually had a planet like ours within it. Then the voice came and asked, what if each of those dark moments is actually waiting for light to shine within it. Then I understood, unnecessary interruptions are often necessary.
CLOSING: Yesterday driving down the road a song came to mind. I started to sing out loud. The people in the car next to me started to laugh. Since I learned it as a child many renditions of it have been created. Please join me, add your words as you have learned it.