Showing posts from December, 2017

You Were Called a Carpenter's Son

I am on Week 16 - Jesus' Early Years in the Spiritual Exercises in Everyday Life. 
You Were Called a Carpenter's Son.

The living Son of God willed to be born into a human family; let us adore Him, let us beseech Him: 
Jesus, sanctify us through your obedience.Eternal Word of the Father, you were subject to Mary and Joseph.
Jesus, sanctify us through your obedience.Master and Lord, your mother kept all your words and deeds in her heart.  Jesus, sanctify us through your obedience.Creator of the universe, you were called the carpenter's son.  Jesus, sanctify us through your obedience. You grew in age and grace in your family at Nazareth, you are our leader and our brother.  Jesus, sanctify us through your obedience. God our Father, you gave Mary and Joseph the grace to watch over Jesus' early years.  Make your Church a community where people learn to watch o…

52 Books in 52 Weeks Wrap Up 2017

I am part of a thing called 52 Books in 52 Weeks. She always has us do a wrap up, and here is mine.

Here is the website:

1) Where did your reading take you this year?

Afghanistan, Syria, France, Oregon Wilderness, Cornwall, England, Refugees all over the world, Africa, Sweden, Arctic, World War II Europe, Mexico, Palestine, Warsaw, Poland, England proper, the Polar Ice Caps on the way to the North Pole.
2) What was your reading goal for the year and did you meet or beat it?

52 books, and I beat it by 11
3) Top 5 (or more favorite reads)  Poldark Saga - It is 12 books, and 6064 pages, but I will count it as one here. Absolutely riveting and phenomenal writing. Highly recommend. These will be classics for years to come. A Simple Life-Changing Prayer (The Prayer that Changes Everything) - This was probably the most impactful as I am now doing this prayer daily. This book helped me understand the why behind everything. Very short and sweet.The Practice of the…

64. The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence

This is the Blackstone Audio version of one of my Top 10 favorite spiritual books. I think everyone should read it. On audio, it is only an hour, and I did it while taking a shower one day and then a walk another. It has so many gems in it, it will be a book you come back to over and over again. 
Each month the Renovaré Institute for Christian Formation gives us a "Praxis (practice)" Exercise. It helps us put into practice what we are learning in the Institute, but it is a lovely practice. I am going to give you the poem they gave us in the actual assignment, and then my essay follows.

On the first page of Knowing Christ Today, Dallas Willard has placed the title THE KINGDOM OF GOD, and included the following poem from Francis Thompson:

This is about finding God in everyday life. Francis Thompson wrote this while a homeless drug addict in London. Meditate on this. What do you think?
THE KINGDOM OF GOD In No Strange Land by Francis Thompson
O world invisible, we view thee, O world…

It was a hard days night, but a shout of joy has come in the morning . . . .

After an extremely hard day yesterday. The hardest day I have probably had in a YEAR, (But TODAY is a new beginning, and I am good - still exploring some things, but God gave me a great "triage" for the days ahead.)

I was reminded of this song:

"I Hope You Dance"
I hope you never lose your sense of wonder,
You get your fill to eat but always keep that hunger,
May you never take one single breath for granted,
GOD forbid love ever leave you empty handed,
I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean,
Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens,
Promise me that you'll give faith a fighting chance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.

I hope you dance....I hope you dance.

I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance,
Never settle for the path of least resistance
Livin' might mean takin' chances but they're worth takin',
Lovin' might be a mistake but it's worth makin',
Don't let some hell ben…

O Loving Widsom of Our God!

O loving wisdom of our God! 
When all was sin and shame,
A second Adam to the fight,
And to the rescue came.
(Poem by John Henry Newman, 1801-1890.
The hymn can be heard HERE

My Soul Magnifies the LORD

While meditating on Psalm 98 during my Online Retreat Week 15, I thought of this great song by Chris Tomlin. Singing and dancing this morning.

"My Soul Magnifies The Lord"
Good news of great joy
For every woman, every man
This will be a sign to you
A baby born in Bethlehem

Come and worship
Do not be afraid

A company of angels
Glory in the highest
And on the earth peace among
Those of whom His favor rests

Oh, come and worship
Do not be afraid, no, no

My soul, my soul magnifies the Lord
My soul magnifies the Lord
He has done great things for me
Great things for me

Unto you a child is born
Unto us a Son is given
Let every heart prepare His throne
And every nation under Heaven

Come and worship
Do not be afraid, no, no

My soul, my soul magnifies the Lord
My soul magnifies the Lord
He has done great things for me
Great things for me

My soul, my soul magnifies the Lord
My soul magnifies the Lord
He has done great things for me
Great things for me

Of His government there will be no …

Sunday Six Minute Freewrite

I am doing a short six minute freewrite today because I am going to start writing my last section of my academic paper for the Renovaré Institute. Last week, after I frittered away my time all day on Monday, I started with a freewrite on the next day, and it really opened up the writing side of my brain. I do so love to write, and I had to pray through the whole idea of writing an academic paper. It was interesting because I went in the shower and had God show me what my motive and intention should be in the writing. Should it be for a good grade? I knew that the answer was so NO on that one. I don't care about a grade, and I don't think I am doing this for eventual seminary credit. I love all the people in this program, but i see no difference in love between those with seminary backgrounds and those without. I see no difference in devotion to God between those with seminary backgrounds and those without it. So, will venture to say that seminary is a waste of time. My limited…

Thursday Morning Freewrite

I realize that I am "frittering" away my time this morning. It started when I slept in until my alarm at 6 am. Seriously, it is a rare occasion when I sleep in until my 6 am alarm goes off. I usually get up about 4:45. I have long and luxurious times with God (the advantage of having the "sleepless elite" gene is that I only require six hours of sleep every night). I only slept three two nights ago. So, I am probably just "averaging out" to my usual (and healthy - Google the gene) 6 hours. I am better without distractions. I am better when it is dark and light comes into the world as I meditate on Scripture in the dark and the sun comes up in the late fall/early winter). But today, I slept until my alarm.

Then, I got up and Michael was getting ready to go to work (leaves at 7 am). I also didn't make my tea, but I got a Zoom call from Elizabeth. Oh yay, I remember last night and forgot this morning that we Zoom at 6:30 am every other Thursday. Good chat…

Come Rouse Us From Our Slumbering

You have visited us, God our Father, through the Incarnation of your well-beloved Son: keep us vigilant until He comes in Glory.
In you, Lord, is our hope!You have traced out for us in your Son a path of light, may the whole world arise and walk toward you in the light of His face.

In you, Lord, is our hope! As the night draws to a close and day approaches, come to rouse us from our slumbering.

In you, Lord, is our hope!Grant that we may serve you in justice and holiness all the days of our life.
In you, Lord, is our hope!And when the Son of Man appears, may he find us alert, ready to welcome Him.
In you, Lord, is our hope!You have given your love and your grace, Lord our God, to those who pray to you.  Your promise gives rise to a new world, and you will inaugurate a time of peace.  Convert us through your Spirit; with Him we shall prepare for the …

63. I Told Me So by Gregg A. Ten Elshof

This is a book about how we often deceive ourselves as we walk with Jesus and how we can be honest with ourselves. This leads to transformation.

He suggests having honest and safe community to help speak truth into our lives and not surround ourselves with "yes" men (I am not sure he uses that exact term). I have some honest people like that, and I so appreciate them telling it to me straight!

I have also found daily EXAMEN prayer to be very helpful in getting to the bottom of my sin patterns and not covering it up. 

I made a little handout with a short explanation of EXAMEN prayer, and I really like the EXAMEN.mewebsite for having a record of my daily examinations to see the patterns! 

I think this review is the best summation of this book:

James K. A. Smith  — Calvin College
“Socrates famously asserted that the unexamined life is not worth living. But Gregg Ten Elshof shows us that we make all sorts of little deals with ourselves every day in order to stave off examination and …