My Huge Holy Mountain!

Psalm 92:1 What a beautiful thing, God, to give thanks, to sing an anthem to you, the High God! 2 To announce your love each daybreak, sing your faithful presence all through the night, 3Accompanied by dulcimer and harp, the full-bodied music of strings. 4 You made me so happy, God. I saw your work and I shouted for joy. 5 How magnificent your work, God! How profound your thoughts! 6 Dullards never notice what you do; fools never do get it. 7 When the wicked popped up like weeds and all the evil men and women took over, You mowed them down, finished them off once and for all. 8 You, God, are High and Eternal. 9 Look at your enemies, God! Look at your enemies – ruined! Scattered to the winds, all those hirelings of evil! 10 But you’ve made me strong as a charging bison, you’ve honored me with a festive parade. 11 The sight of my critics going down is still fresh, the rout of my malicious detractors. My ears are filled with the sounds of promise: 12 “Good people will prosper like palm trees, Grow tall like Lebanon cedars;13 transplanted to God’s courtyard, They’ll grow tall in the presence of God, 14 lithe and green, virile still in old age.” 15 Such witnesses to upright God! My Mountain, my huge, holy Mountain! – “The Message”

Another Man’s Wife 2

I wrote this post on the 18th. As I was writing I knew there had to be a part 2 because there’s always a flip side. The premise of the writing was a fantastic quote by a great man of God, BJ Robison, who pastored in El Sobrante, CA for many years and went on to heaven just a few short months ago, and the quote reads:

Watch the way a man treats another man’s wife and that will define his character.

Here’s the flip side.

  • The man who mows the soldier’s lawn when he’s deployed.
  • The man who doesn’t receive an accusation against another man’s wife.
  • The man who doesn’t overstep his boundaries in advice toward another man’s wife.
  • The man who encourages a husband to go home to his wife.
  • The man who inquires about another man’s wife and her well-being.
  • The man who will not speak against against another man’s wife.
  • The man who advises a young groom on his role as a husband.
  • The man who can advise another man’s wife on her action within boundaries.
  • The man who can send his wife, or trusted female friend, to help and mentor another man’s wife.
  • The man who does not try to fix another man’s wife.
Then there is the bride of Christ.
  • The man who understands his care for the bride while the groom is away.
  • The man who uses his talents to compliment her and not discourage her.
  • The man who sees a need a fills it without regard for credit.
  • The man who recognizes that she comes in all shapes and sizes.
  • The man who works tirelessly to retain her dignity.
  • The man who loves her despite herself.
  • The man who covers her in prayer.
  • The man who recognizes his place with her and knows he is not the groom but simply a friend of the groom.
  • The man who doesn’t exalt himself above her.
  • The man who loves her with the kindness of a friend.
  • The man who does not speak against her, even if…

Another Man’s Wife

I read a quote from a great man of God, Pastor BJ Robison, a great friend of my husband’s, who recently went home to be with the Lord. He said:

Watch the way a man treats another man’s wife and that will define his character.

I thought in terms of people at first.

  • The man who eyes another man’s wife as a piece of meat.
  • The man who lusts after another man’s wife.
  • The man who scorns another man’s wife.
  • The man who is in direct competition of another man’s wife.
  • The man disregards another man’s wife, either by dismissing her thoughts or taking for granted her kindness towards him.
  • The man who judges another man’s wife because of her appearance, education, or opinion.
  • The man who speaks against her in public to puff himself up.
  • The man who measures his own wife by another man’s wife.
  • The man who feels he in a place to correct another man’s wife.

Then I began to think the church as she the bride of Christ.

  • The man who is obsessed with taking her down for his own agenda.
  • The man who judges the church based on her taste in music or attire.
  • The man who is critical of her parts.
  • The man who has taken it upon himself to change her.
  • The man who tries to rule over her.
  • The man who stifles her growth and creativity.
  • The man who wants her doused in religion instead of salt.
  • The man who crushes her with his unwillingness to change.
  • The man who tries to take advantage of her.
  • The man who doesn’t fear her groom.
  • The man who tries to take advantage of her kindness, education, or opinion.
  • The man who demands of her but doesn’t fund her.
  • The man who tries to lure her children away with false teaching.
  • The man who tries to kill her.
  • The man who ridicules her.
  • The man who finds her an unnecessary burden.
  • The man who doesn’t respect her place.

A Different Kind of Battle

Here is another article on being a step mom from CNN.

Linda Petty writes a great article on the life of a step mom. I loved her job advertisement because it is just that way. She goes back to write some of the comments on the article written by Rachelle Katz that I blogged about on May 6, 2011, and it highlights the differing views on step moms.

Maybe the world is starting to recognize that there are more blended families than biological families and that there is much help needed!

The Wolf and The Lamb

A WOLF, meeting with a Lamb astray from the fold, resolved not to lay violent hands on him, but to find some plea to justify to the Lamb the Wolf’s right to eat him. He thus addressed him: “Sirrah, last year you grossly insulted me.” “Indeed,” bleated the Lamb in mournful tone of voice, “I was not then born.” Then said the Wolf, “You feed in my pasture.” “No, good sir,” replied the lamb, “I have not yet tasted grass.” Again said the Wolf, “You drink of my well.” “No,” exclaimed the Lamb, “I never yet drank water, for as yet my mother’s milk is both food and drink to me.” Upon which the Wolf seized him and ate him up, saying, “Well! I won’t remain supperless, even though you refute every one of my imputations.”

The tyrant will always find a pretext for his tyranny. -Aesop’s Fables

Doing A Great Work

I read this today and it made me smile. I wish I knew who wrote it but once you read it, it will seem par for the course that I don’t. Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there. You are doing a great work!

The Invisible Mother

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I’m on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I’m thinking, ‘Can’t you see I’m on the phone?’

Obviously not; no one can see if I’m on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all. I’m invisible. The invisible Mom. Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more! Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this??

Some days I’m not a pair of hands; I’m not even a human being. I’m a clock to ask, ‘What time is it?’ I’m a satellite guide to answer, ‘What number is the Disney Channel?’ I’m a car to order, ‘Right around 5:30, please.’

Some days I’m a crystal ball; ‘Where’s my other sock? ‘Where’s my phone?, What’s for dinner?

I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history, music and literature – but now, they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She’s going, she’s going, she’s gone!

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England. She had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when she turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, ‘I brought you this.’ It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe. I wasn’t exactly sure why she’d given it to me until I read her inscription: ‘With admiration for the greatness of what you are building while no one sees.’

In the days ahead I would read – no, devour – the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work: 1) No one can say who built the great cathedrals – we have no record of their names. 2) These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished. 3) They made great sacrifices and expected no credit. 4) The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A story of legend in the book told of a rich man who came to visit a cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, ‘Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it.’ And the workman replied, ‘Because God sees.’

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, ‘I see you. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you’ve done, no sequin you’ve sewn on, no cupcake you’ve baked, no Cub Scout meeting, no last minute errand is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can’t see right now what it will become.’

I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on. The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don’t want my son to tell the friend he’s bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, ‘My Mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for 3 hours and presses all the linens for the table.’ That would mean I’d built a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his friend, he’d say, ‘You’re gonna love it there…’

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we’re doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible mothers.

Thank you to all the Moms who are looking down and smiling at the cathedrals they helped to build. May God bless and keep you.

Keep Me From Stupid Sins

What a way to start a day!

Psalm 19:1 God’s glory is on tour in the skies, God-craft on exhibit across the horizon. 2 Madame Day holds classes every morning, Professor Night lectures each evening. 3 Their words aren’t heard, their voices aren’t recorded, 4 But their silence fills the earth: unspoken truth is spoken everywhere. God makes a huge dome for the sun – a superdome! 5 The morning sun’s a new husband leaping from his honeymoon bed, The daybreaking sun an athlete racing to the tape. 6 That’s how God’s Word vaults across the skies from sunrise to sunset, Melting ice, scorching deserts, warming hearts to faith. 7 The revelation of God is whole and pulls our lives together. The signposts of God are clear and point out the right road. 8 The life-maps of God are right, showing the way to joy. The directions of God are plain and easy on the eyes. 9 God’s reputation is twenty-four-carat gold, with a lifetime guarantee. The decisions of God are accurate down to the nth degree. 10 God’s Word is better than a diamond, better than a diamond set between emeralds. You’ll like it better than strawberries in spring, better than red, ripe strawberries. 11 There’s more: God’s Word warns us of danger and directs us to hidden treasure. 12 Otherwise how will we find our way? Or know when we play the fool? 13 Clean the slate, God, so we can start the day fresh! Keep me from stupid sins, from thinking I can take over your work; Then I can start this day sun-washed, scrubbed clean of the grime of sin. 14 These are the words in my mouth; these are what I chew on and pray. Accept them when I place them on the morning altar, O God, my Altar-Rock, God, Priest-of-My-Altar. – “The Message”

Gift Registries

Here’s a question I received from Frances:

Susan! I have a friend that is having a graduation party for receiving her Masters Degree and she has created a gift registry for herself for the occasion. I have my own opinions on this but would like to hear your thoughts! Also, as a note, she didn’t send the registry to all the invitees, only her close family and friends. Thanks!

Big Sigh! You kinda knew this was coming didn’t you? I mean, we start off early, you get paid to toss the trash because it’s your mom’s job and if she delegates it then it should cost her, you get paid for grades, you get paid for mowing the lawn and we parents do all this for you because you are entitled to get paid for your self-esteem. So what’s next on the list? You send out graduation announcements because you want the money people send, or you register for the gifts you want because after all you’ve been taught that you are entitled.

Only, what is a gift?

Gift ~ noun ~ something given voluntarily without payment in return, as to show favor toward someone, honor an occasion, or make a gesture of assistance; present.

When I give a gift, I think about that person. I try to be thoughtful in my gift giving. I try to find something that would be meaningful to that person. Buying off a list doesn’t appeal to me at all.

I think all these registries are over the top, and believe me, I’ve seen them for everything, even children’s parties. When you have a gift registry you are telling the person that you expect them to give you a gift, and you are telling them that not any gift will do, but that you want them to give you specific gifts of your choice. At that point the definition of gift ceases.

It could be worse though, she could have stated on her invitation that she didn’t want gifts only money, then your friendship would have been measured by your worth, and her basically telling you she doesn’t trust your judgment on gift giving. In any case, if you’re going to go on with your tacky self and do a registry, you never put the registry in with the invitation, and only pull it out if you are asked.

And this is why this generation is called the Entitled Generation or the Me Generation, and it’s not their fault. It’s ours, the parents of this generation who didn’t teach the same basic manners we were taught.


74% of Americans believe in heaven. 59% of Americans believe in hell. Yet, the majority of Americans are sure Osama Bin Laden is in hell today. Newspapers are making that their headline. Facebook is off the charts with this declarative statement. It makes me wonder if in fact, we don’t believe in hell, or if we think we are safe from it?