Month: January 2012

Faith Wars

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I’ve been praying fervently for a friend.  Health issues can be the best and the worst kinds of prayers.  On the one hand, if a mate gets better, you can thank God, and go on your merry way.  If they get worse, or die however, it makes you wonder about praying for the sick at all! 

 I have a vision in my mind of a praying tyrant who comes to the home of the sickly one and paces the floors. He wears a dark hat and long coat and maybe even steps out for a cigarette every now and then. He sits quietly in the corner and reads, he paces some more, and prays like a pit bull.  He has no intention of leaving until that bloody evil thing gets off the person and runs for cover, leaving the victim sitting upright and smiling and asking for something to eat.  Yes, this is the manner of person I want at my bedside if I am prematurely stricken.  But this is a rare one indeed.  Most who are evoked to pray simply are agreeing to worry, and look very sincerely upward, perhaps even with tear filled eyes, saying, “Do you hear me, God?” 

Most simply don’t believe God operates that way. But Jesus said all you need is a mustard seed of faith.  I’ve been giving some thought to this little seed, and doing a bit of research. 

From Wikipedia regarding the parable of the mustard seed:  There is a “subversive and scandalous” element to this parable, in that the fast-growing nature of the mustard plant makes it a “malignant weed” with “dangerous takeover properties”. Pliny the Elder, in his Natural History (published around AD 78) writes, “Mustard… is extremely beneficial for the health. It grows entirely wild, though it is improved by being transplanted: but on the other hand when it has once been sown it is scarcely possible to get the place free of it, as the seed when it falls germinates at once.”

So it is with faith! Once it has been sown, it can take over like a weed! And grow so fast it kills the plants around it!  Well, stay tuned to see how it all plays out. 

I have been inspired to add to this these thoughts.  Ask and it shall be given to you, Seek and you shall find, Knock and it shall be opened unto you.  These scriptures in the Greek mean KEEP ON ASKING,  and KEEP ON SEEKING, and KEEP ON KNOCKING.  With persistence, and with expectation.  Have you ever been searching for a kitchen utensil that is missing?  You frantically dig through drawers, and look through cabinets, and every place it could be. You search with a determination because you just KNOW it’s GOT to be there! You aren’t thinking you will never find it, you are SURE you WILL find it, and you are sure it IS there!  So it is with faith.  We KNOW God is merciful, we KNOW HE is good, we KNOW he is full of compassion.  And so when we pray and look for healing, it is with a certainty that it exists, that it is there, and is right.  Love hopes all things, BELIEVES all things.  Love NEVER fails. 

 

 

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Table talk

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“People just find it easier to hate.  They can feel better about themselves if they put someone else down.  People want enemies.  They need enemies to make themselves feel good.”

 I swirl the water in my glass and sigh, frowning; thinking.  This cannot be.  I cannot accept this.

 “No, people can edify one another, build EACH OTHER up.  That removes the need to put others down.  It is possible to love even your enemies.”  I say, hoping I don’t get crushed further.

 “Oh come on.  Who do you know that does that?  How many people do you know that aren’t prejudice?  How many of your friends?  Your family?”

 I feel a challenge coming on, and try to think honestly over all the evidence I’ve seen of prejudice in my own circle of friends and family.  And like a scanner, my brain runs over and over trying to remember incidences and suddenly it stopped.

 “I can think of three.” I said finally.

 “Three that aren’t?”  He said.

 “No, three people that I have been close to who have openly said something blatantly prejudice.  That doesn’t mean there aren’t more incidences, but I can only think of three people I would call prejudice.”

 “What about your siblings?” He asked.

 “Nope.”

 “Hmm.  Well who are they?”   I told him.  He wasn’t surprised.  But the point was made.  Maybe everyone doesn’t hate.  Maybe everyone isn’t harboring some dark prejudice toward another people group.  Maybe there are only a few.  And maybe when they talk, we are embarrassed to be associated with them.  I just write it off as insecurity and ignorance.  But I still wish I wasn’t around when they expressed it.

 In Denmark, I am munching a bag of Doritos with writing on the back in NL, FR, UK, and a little thumbs up symbol on the bottom of the bag saying “Doritos. Yiiiiiiha!”  My Coke says something about Facebook on it, but I am not sure what, as it is written in Danish.  To me, it feels like the world is getting smaller and smaller.  Maybe that will make it easier to love our neighbor as ourselves.  But I doubt it.

@#$%#$@ It! It’s Beer Thirty!

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Got dressed, primped and gussied up so I could “show up” for the day.  Went out and hit one of my thrift spots.  My goal: find something I can’t live without.  Didn’t happen.  So I wandered a bit further to one of my favorite antique shops.  Closed.  Well that does it; back to the room, with a cold beer.  Off with the jeans, on with the comfy pants and ditch this damn bra! .  I do believe it’s movie time!  I must say, the Herslev India Pale Ale can make any day in Denmark a blessed day!  I have been forever converted to beer LOVER!

Barf alert: A Break from Writing.

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Knowing I could be sitting in the very hotel room where Hans Christian Anderson penned his craft should keep me glued to my writing, but instead, I find myself writing about writing.  I’ve transcribed over twelve chapters of my story, but have to pause every so often for the nausea that overtakes me from this sappy sweet voice of my own creation!  I return and continue to transcribe some more, editing as I go, but have to stop again.  How did the charecters get so damn sappy? I simply must add some cynical dark sides to this work or it will be doomed to live as a cheezy novel suited to a church picnic.  Oh it’s not that nothing bad happens, but the charecters are so wonderfully accepting that it makes me want to hurl. Or hurl the manuscript across the room.  

The rain hasn’t let up since this trip began.  But I forced myself out for thrift store finds yesterday!  I was on the lookout for a vintage wool blanket to add to my collection, but I found some strange other fabric that’s almost thick as canvas! And big too! Couldn’t pass that up. Maybe a thin rug for a back porch. It feels like a tent. Great find for 50 kroner, (about 10 bucks).

 And then I found this little piece that has a bit of candlewax on it, and a stained to be treated, but again, for two bucks, you can’t go wrong.  I love this stuff!  Did someone say rain? 

and up close: 

Oh yeah. It’s still raining out there.  Guess I should get back to my sappy story! Happy January to all! 

January

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Tis the still, quiet, introspective season. Unseen life waits beneath the cover of winter.  Dormant dreams hide.  Time stands still.  The rush is hushed.  The heart is free to soar from past to future and back home again.

    I find a dreamer’s perch on a captured balcony and indulge my fantasies.

           I’m a child in the window, who dreams of being  grown up.


   And ahead to spring.  Dreams of homes and gardens and gatherings.

Time stood still when I found this darling lonesome flower, hanging onto its life into the winter months.

             Feel the shiver from the stillness of the marina.

        Remembering the green warmth of late summer. 

What better time of year to remember the way the clouds moved just for me, completing the perfect day with a nod from heaven.  Happy New Year, and many quiet dreams to you all!