in the wake of tragedy

tragedy

o how life changes in an instant…
life….
and
death….

a precious little one….battling a senseless and needless addiction
innocent
pure
but tainted with the effects of someone else’s choice
now she has to struggle to survive.

news of an incredibly shocking and heartbreaking act of violence…
murder….
attempted suicide….
life
gone
in
an
instant

the wake of tragedy…
the aftermath…
what to do?
what to think?
where to place the anger?

starving for peace…and understanding.
helpless.
frustrated.

in the wake of tragedy….my need for God is great

Lord, I come, I confess
Bowing here I find my rest
Without You I fall apart
You’re the One that guides my heart

Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You – Matt Maher, I Need You

craving grace….

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the din of peace

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“We are starved for intimacy, to see and feel and know God in the very cells of our being.  We are starved for rest, to know God beyond what we can do for him.  We are starved for quiet, to hear the sound of sheer silence that is the presence of God himself”. – Invitation to Solitude and Silence, Ruth Haley Barton

retreat…
rest…
solitude…
silence…
peace.

the sound of the falls was clear.
the power of the water was noticeable.
the presence of God was deafening.

a pause in the busyness of life
a break in the day-to-day
a time to be refreshed and renewed

a time to contemplate…not only the unknown future
but also
the familiar present.

Psalm 23 (the Voice)

The Eternal is my shepherd, He cares for me always.

He knows my name
He knows my every thought
He sees each tear that falls
And He hears me when I call

He provides me rest in rich, green fields beside streams of refreshing water.

He soothes my fears.

He makes me whole again, steering me off worn, hard paths to roads where truth and righteousness echo His name.

He knows my name
He knows my every thought
He sees each tear that falls
And He hears me when I call

Even in the unending shadows of death’s darkness, I am not overcome by fear.
Because you are with me in those dark moments, near with Your protection and guidance, I am comforted.

You spread out a table before me, provisions in the midst of attack from my enemies;
You care for all my needs, anointing my head with soothing fragrant oil filling my cup again and again with Your grace.

He knows my name
He knows my every thought
He sees each tear that falls
And He hears me when I call

Certainly Your faithful protection and loving provision will pursue me where I go, always, everywhere.
I will always be with the Eternal, in Your house forever.

rest.
stillness.
quiet.
peace.

to hear the sound of sheer silence that is the presence of God himself.
the moments I will forever cherish.

named by grace…

yo-yo

photo from treat.com

a yo-yo….up, down
near, far
.
stop, re-wind the string…
up
down

…ever feel like a yo-yo?
(be careful…we are being kind to ourselves) 🙂

ever feel like your faith is a yo-yo?
I do.

God is near.
life is good.
all the pieces are falling into place.
relationships are solid
life has meaning

then the string releases…

God seems farther away
life is confusing
the pieces seem jumbled
friends seem distant

then, the cycle continues….
a
yo-yo

I feel like that now…
and I think a lot of it has to do with school
I have taken on this ginormous task
that I, frankly, don’t always feel confident in undertaking

a yo-yo there too

things are good
grades are good
then…
vulnerability and
a poor quiz grade set me back

up
down
near
far

can I really do this?
– yes, I can

is this who I am to be?
– yes, it is

being a yo-yo is exhausting….
am I stuck being a yo-yo?

no…no I’m not.

God is solid.
God is constant.
God is faithful…He will not bring me to a place just to see me flounder.
God is Provider and Sustainer.

God has made a way.
He has brought me to this place…

What is going on?                     Living on this rollercoaster.                     Up and down,                     Twisting, turning, bruising, burning.

Speak to me,                     Tell me all the things I want to hear.                     Show me all the things I love so dear.                     So speak – Delirious?, Rollercoaster

So since we stand surrounded by all those who have gone before, an enormous cloud of witnesses, let us drop every extra weight, every sin that clings to us and slackens our pace, and let us run with endurance the long race set before us.

We may feel alone, but we aren’t. We are surrounded by an army of witnesses. They have run the race of faith and finished well. It is now our turn.

Now stay focused on Jesus, who designed and perfected our faith. – Hebrews 12:1-2 (the Voice) with commentary

focused on grace…

earlier bits

November 2013
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