Thursday, October 30, 2008

My Gift for Spelling Reverie

A Writer's Reveire

There is much I do not know
Much about, so
The axiom, write what you know,
Leaves me with a small scope;
As I cannot go wide,
I shall try to go deep,
And high, to the earth I can excavate,
The heavens writely rate,
Until words empty pen
And I have reason to write again.

-Elizabeth Knussman

*This poem was given to me by an encouraging friend at work today!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


2 Corinthians 4:8
"We are hard pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed... For all things are for your sakes, that grace, having spread through the many, may cause thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God. Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal."

Do I believe this? Do I trust God's Word as true and infallible? Do I believe it with a heart confidence that will lay down my life on the stakes that it is true? Yes! My heart shouts a resounding, yes! Then I must bear up under trials in victory and not merely hang on by a thread. The Holy Spirit within me is infinately powerful--in Him I can do all things. He sets and fixes my mind on the truth. God's glory is my ultimate goal, before my comfort, before my happiness. If suffering will in some way bring God glory and cause me (and others) to come before our King with thanksgiving, then so be it. If suffering will produce in me eternal riches that far outweigh any blessings afforded on this earth, then so be it! If trials will renew my spirit, despite what they do to me physically or emotionally, then so be it. And may the Lord grant me mercy to endure and a renewed mind to think biblically in the midst of it all.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

How To Die With Grace

I can't imagine what it's like to know you have a limited amount of time before you die. In some ways, I'd almost rather not know. But I also thinks it's a great blessing to be able to prepare, plan, say good bye, and get your heart and mind ready to meet your Savior.

I often wonder, if faced with the same prognosis as my mom, how would I react? Would I laugh? Cry? Would I be scared? Angry? Would I have regrets?

I know one thing is for sure. I want to die with grace. And I want my mom to die with grace. What does that mean? What does it look like to "die with grace?" It means composure. It means joy. Transparency. It means dependance on God, and faith, and confidence, and courage. It means being a testimony of Christ, even in the face of the unknown (experientially speaking). It means being selfless and bold. It means clinging to Christ in a way that's unimaginable, and being joyful in it! It means feeling lonely at times, but believing with a heart confidence that God is consistent in His character and His word, and that He will deal with me personally only in ways that are consistent with His good character.

I'm praying, and hope you'll join me in praying that my mom will die with grace and not only my mom, but that all of us--you, me--that we will all be cultivating the character now that is necessary when the time comes for us to die with grace too.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Be Faithful Unto Death

I told my best friend today, "I feel like I've been banged, and battered, and hammered every which way lately, but hopefully I will come out a more shining and beautiful reflection of Christ." And that is truly my prayer.

"Your life is short--and our duties are many. Yet your assistance great--and your reward sure. Therefore, faint not--hold on and hold up, in ways of holiness, and heaven shall make amends for all! 'Be faithful until death--and I will give you the crown of life!'"
-Revelation 2:10

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Wisdom from a Modern-Day Grace Gem

"It is your hand that has afflicted us for your glory. To teach us and those around us that you are God, and worthy of worship and praise. Don't let us waste this cancer. Help me to have the mind of Christ. Who, for the joy set before Him, endured the cross . Help me to have joy in my suffering, joy in my humiliation. Please give me joy in weakness and in shame."
-Andrew Mark

"It's okay to have anxieties and cares, but we need to continually cast them on Jesus. Trying not to have anxiety or cares isn't godly. Having those anxieties and then casting them upon Jesus is godly. That's what the Bible calls me to do."
-Bob (Grace Mark's Brother)

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Who Is This Christ?

Oh, how the Lord knows just what we need, and what I needed was a weekend in Frazier Park focusing on the person and character of Christ. My Bible study spent a couple of hours writing down characteristics of Christ (with Scripture references) and when we reached #104, we decided it was time for bed, but surely we could have kept going for an infinite amount of time and still not have exhausted the majesty of Christ. When I sat back and looked at the poster-sized stick-it notes on the wall with those 104 truths about Christ this was my response:

This list is really just the beginning. We can't even start to scratch the surface of all that God is, and in specific CHRIST, not even mentioning the Father and the Holy Spirit. What an overwhelming and humbling exercise. It really helps to put things in perspective. When I'm tempted to think about my trials or the circumstances in my life that I want to change, I simply glance at this list and I'm in awe of all that my Savior is and it makes me cry out, "who am I that You should know my name?" Are my petty problems too big for this great God? Do I feel alone? How can I when I have a Great High Priest who sympathizes with my weakness and who knows precisely what I'm going through. I'm thankful for Christ, that He died for me. This God, this Christ, that is so powerful, I can't fully comprehend--He died for me. And he lives in me right now. He is the provider and source of the power I need to live for Him each day. He purchased me on Calvary and then He drew me to the cross through His irresistible grace. He took my place, atoned for my sins. And now, seated at God's right hand, He acts as my mediator, and He intercedes for me when I pray. And he's preparing a place for me where I will be eternally in His presence, reigning as a coheir with Him! What wondrous love is this? What can I do to repay Him? Nothing. I can't. But I will offer up my life as a living sacrifice, and as an act of reasonable service to Him. He is my life, my all in all, and Colossians 2:10 says He completes me. How foolish of me to crave any other thing, or to desire any other when He ALONE can fill my cup to overflowing and satisfy my soul!