Yearning To Be Whole

Solitude breeds thought which brings forth perspective. 

He is heard in a still small voice, a gentle whisper, yet we search for the audibly, louder signs. 

He is felt on the gentle caress of a breeze, the solstice of a nighttime walk, yet we pay no attention. 

All day long we run the rat-race chasing things of little importance in hopes of having these gaping holes inside of us filled. We want to know there is a purpose for us. We yearn to be whole. Complete.

All around us negativity and fear is blossoming like sunflowers in the fields too numerous to count. Our world has changed a lot. We are looking at things square in the eyes that we hoped we would never have to experience in our lifetime. Pandemics, self quarantine, riots, incredible storms, murder, and lack of morals seem at an all-time high and so close to home. We want peace. We want harmony. We want security. 

I sit here and this chapter comes to my mind. Slowly I read and reread its content. 

“As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”  Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you.  For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many.  You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come.  Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places.  All these are the beginning of birth pains.   “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me.  At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other,  and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.  Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold,  but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.  And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.   “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’   spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand—  then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.  Let no one on the housetop go down to take anything out of the house.  Let no one in the field go back to get their cloak.  How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers!  Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath.  For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again.   “If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened.  At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it.  For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.  See, I have told you ahead of time.   “So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the wilderness,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it.  For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.  Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather.   “Immediately after the distress of those days  “ ‘the sun will be darkened,  and the moon will not give its light;  the stars will fall from the sky,  and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.’    “Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth   will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory.  And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.   “Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near.  Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it  is near, right at the door.  Truly I tell you, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened.  Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.   “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son,   but only the Father.  As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.  For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark;  and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.  Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left.  Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.   “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come.  But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into.  So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.”

Matthew 24:3‭-‬44 NIV”

I encourage you to seek comfort in these words, to rest assure that the world may be surprising us left and right but God is not surprised.

Hold on my brothers and sisters. Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes in the morning.

Suicide Is Not Normal

Your actions put you in the limelight.
My senses are heightened as
I recognize this behavior.
I try to offer a warm embrace instead you push me away.

Habitually, you run to isolation.
Chased there by fear of the light,
Not wanting any piece of you exposed,
As you cope through being scared and shaken,
Wondering how you can get through one more night.

Yet, in shadows I quietly pursue
Seeing that the temptation to self destruct is making you sway.
I want to be there to break the fall.
Actually, I want to keep you from falling at all.

You collapse into a dark corner’s embrace.
I see a familiar glint of silver.
My heart quickens.
Lunging from the darkness,
I grab your hand just as you start to bring crimson.

Suicide doesn’t take away your pain,
it gives it to someone else.
I know how you can be led here. To this place.
I know it’s not really what you want,
you just see no other way.

You run from the Light. However in this moment I will boldly show it.

James 4:2 You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask.

It is not normal to want to kill yourself. 

Ephesians 5:29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church.

I think you’ve sat at all wrong campfires
Taking to heart all the wrong stories.
So much that you’ve let it wax your heart so cold.

One of the questions you must ask yourself, is suicide really enduring to the end?

Matthew 24:13 But the one who endures to the end will be saved.

I cannot complete you. I cannot make you see what you refuse to look at. I can’t reach in and take all the anger and hurt you carry and crush it in my hands. I wish. The important thing is I know someone who can. These are His words to us.

Matthew 11:28  “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Psalm 43:5 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

Romans 15:13  May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Psalm 34:18 The LORD is close to the brokenhearted, and he delivers those whose spirit has been crushed.

As I finish reading these to you, I notice around us, it seems that darkness is slowly stepping away.
Your tears begin to stop flowing.
And the glint first held in a blade is now seen as that start of a sparkle in your eyes.

Hope has arrived.

I step back to allow Him room.
As I do He takes her in His arms and begins loving her back to life.




COVID And The Paradigm Shift

I would have to say COVID 19 has probably brought about connection and reassurance as well as an urgency in my life. 

I say connection because for my family and I, COVID 19 has served as a positive reinforcement to establish a more genuine, authentic family bond. 

I am sad that COVID 19 has caused so many deaths, bred fear, conjured up uncertainty, stress and many other negative emotions. This is life as we know it living among the dying. Everything  here is so temporal.  What we thought would never happen in our lifetime has happened. Event after event we are either left with questions or answers. This is why I say for me COVID 19 has brought reassurance. 

COVID 19 has been a paradigm shift for me. My way of living and thinking is forever changed. For 4 months, we’ve been home together with very little outside influences or distraction, forced to reconnect with one another, learn how to communicate better, give each other space, slow down our pace, take time as we do devotions to let it soak in, and be a stronger family than ever before.

Life before COVID felt hectic. There never seemed to be time to relax. To meditate. To soak things in like God’s Word, nature, and the simple moments which really are the best of moments. 

We still work and do school. It is not perfect, but it is fairly productive and good.  We’ve been cleaners for 20 years and I will seriously state that it’s nice to see people actually use the soap, paper towels, and sanitizers. We stock those supplies much more frequently than prior to COVID. Though we use masks and gloves in each place, we are beyond blessed to have been able to keep on working through this pandemic. We are deemed essential oddly enough. 

My  study time has been much more real. I have quiet time that is actually (usually) quiet – and I can devote real time to it.  Most days I have so much more time to think, to listen, to process, and to discover.  I am discovering the good gifts that God has given me and my family. More than anything, I am overwhelmed by God’s goodness at every turn.  He overwhelms me with His goodness. 

Fear is a faithless coward and has no place in our lives as believers.  Fear and worry have no seat at our table though they are at the door constantly seeking entry.  We are here because God wants us here, right now, for His purpose in this pandemic. 

COVID 19 wants you to isolate, stock up, and take care of your own first.  Let us instead look to Him first, while we also take care of others.

I believe also there is an urgency to seek out the lost. God makes it very clear in His Word  that this world as we know it will fade away. Wars, disease, and apocalyptic events will unfold. Whether it’s in our lifetime or time to come, COVID may just be the catalyst that gets our mindsets in order. 

What if He would have come back mid-March? Would you have been ready? How about those you love around you? Would they have been ready? This is where urgency resonates for me. I want to be sure my answer to all those questions is, “Yes, I am and they are ready, for His return.” 

Daily, this song resonates nonstop in my head, “Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God. It chases me down, fights ’til I’m found, leaves the 99.  I couldn’t earn it, I don’t deserve it, still, You give Yourself away. Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God.”

“The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid.  What can man do to me?” Psalm 118:6

We Must Not Faint

Thinking back on the stories told to me by the elders in my life, I recall their memories of how on any given school day it started with prayer, God’s Word, and the pledge of allegiance. Universally this was accepted as they had respect and a humbleness we, in today’s time have seemed to have forgotten.

We seem to only appreciate this come the 4th of July, anymore.

The Pledge of Allegiance and prayer, was not something to be taken lightly. It was important.

Sweet Grandma (born in 1925) and my daughter.

Slowly this way of usual routine has dwindled. It has become like an idea shredded in the wastebasket. Disregarded.

I seen this fall start in my childhood. I remember comparing the raising I was given to that of theirs and it was very different.

The 21 century standard seems to be that of silencing anything moral and of Biblical principal  at any cost, as if it is a plague robbing life from our human existence.

If I may so, the world I am in today is much more sad and angry than that of even just 30 years ago. Times then were by no means perfect. I endured the most traumatic time of my life then but I still stand on the idea that it’s a much darker place.

Why is it this way?

Have we, who claim to stand on Biblical principles and moral foundations, allowed ourselves to grow faint in our prayers? Have we allowed ourselves to be silenced?

Luke 18:1-8

And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;

2 Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man:

3 And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary.

4 And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man;

5 Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.

6 And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith.

7 And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?

8 I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?

A special place in Texas

I will ponder on this awhile. I will seek to see if I am a part of the problem. I do not want to be silent. I do want to grow faint. I want to show others a way out of this darkness. I want to show them the Everlasting Light. We must always be praying and lifting one another up. We must never stop.

Psalm 34:10

The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing.

I encourage you to keep on fighting the good fight and to know you are not alone.