Monthly Archives: September 2013

A Trinitarian Moment

My flesh and my heart may fail,
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
~Ps. 73:26

In a brief moment as I drove by three young girls huddled on the vast green lawn outside a neighbor’s home, I noticed them peering intently at one thing. With their heads together they were focused, as one, sharing some precious secret with each another. In that trinitarian moment, I joyfully recognized the Oneness of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit,

I wonder how often I fail to fully experience the trinity. Perhaps I too quickly limit God’s presence by separating his Oneness into Creator, Savior and Helper. The 3in1 is all of these and more.

At any brief moment regardless of the names you and I give to the three, together as Lord, they peer into our hearts intent on sharing their precious secret with us. “My child, you are so loved that even when your flesh and your heart fail I am, as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, the strength of your heart and your portion forever.”

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New Doors

 Pray diligently. Stay alert, with your eyes wide open in gratitude.
Don’t forget to pray for us, that God will open doors for telling the mystery of Christ, even while I’m locked up in this jail.
Pray that every time I open my mouth I’ll be able to make Christ plain as day to them.

~Colossians 4:2-4 (The Message)

I just had new closet doors installed in my home. The old doors seemed fine and functional to me, but my husband was tired of closing the old ones that folded in and out. Probably because he takes the time to  close the doors I habitually leave open around the house.

Last week, I also participated in a prayer vigil and was reminded that we are invited to have an open posture when praying. We praised God. We prayed for the doors of our hearts and of our church to be open to sharing the mystery of Christ in our community. We gave thanks to God for the way his story intersects with our stories.

As I look around at the new doors in my house, I wonder if there is a new habit of prayer I am being called to be open to. I wonder what doors in your life and mine need to be closed so that each time we open our mouths Christ is revealed, plain as day.

Let’s spend a few moments devoting ourselves to praying for one another (Ps. 19:14):

May these words of our mouths
and this meditation of our hearts
be pleasing in your sight,
Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.
Amen and amen.

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At Home with the Lord

Surely goodness and mercy
shall follow me all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
Psalm 23:6

Finally, remember the parable Jesus taught about the lost sheep in Luke 15:3-7:

So he told them this parable: “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.

This is the Good News: there is no place like home! The Lord who is our Shepherd wants you and I to be at home with the Him…to dwell in the His house forever. But it isn’t just the place where we will dwell once we die. It is the place we dwell even today. It is a place of being certain that the goodness and mercy of the Good Shepherd are following us here and now.

As we live on this earth, we journey through places of peace…places of blessing…even places of deep darkness. But by the grace of God are found by our Good Shepherd, where we have always belonged. At home with The Lord!

Take time today to rest in the place where you feel most at home with God…and thank him for being your Shepherd.

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Remember and Receive

You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
~Psalm 23:5

Every time we take communion we remember and receive the hospitality Jesus prepared for His Last Supper in the upper room with both his disciples and his enemy. Luke 22:14-21

And when the hour came, he reclined at table, and the apostles with him. And he said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you I will not eat it[b] until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves. For I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood. But behold, the hand of him who betrays me is with me on the table.

This was the place where Jesus fed his closest followers. This was not just any table…it was a table where Jesus faced his fear of betrayal and yet washed the feet of each disciple, even Judas. As God, Jesus recognized that “the struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Eph, 6:12).

Jesus did not waste time struggling against the forces of evil like I do. He faced his enemy. I can spend so much time wrestling with my own fears and insecurities that I don’t confront the true enemy of my soul. Moreover, I fail to remember and receive the anointing of truth and the overflowing hope the Good Shepherd has prepared for me…and for you!

May you and I remember and receive the hospitality of The Lord Jesus Christ without struggling and wrestling! The good news is the Lord is our Shepherd.

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A Sense of Security

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil, for you are with me;
your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
~Psalm 23:4

In John 10:10-15, Jesus described Himself as the “good” shepherd intent on protecting His sheep from evil thieves!

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep.

Thieves who come to steal, kill and destroy prey on those who are lonely and isolated. Thieves don’t just steal material possessions. They can also take any sense of security that might have existed for the person being robbed. A sense of security is the protection and comfort the Good Shepherd gives as he restores the souls of those who follow him to green pastures, to quiet waters and on paths of righteousness.

On those days when I feel darkness lurking “too close for comfort,” I remind myself of all I know of The Lord and all he knows of me. On those days when my thoughts begin to stray, I pray my own version of this verse from Psalm 23:

Lord, you are my Shepherd.
Even though I walk around feeling very alone,
I am not afraid for your goodness is with me.
May your love and your truth protect and comfort me,
now and forever. Amen.

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