December 10, 2016

AdventWord::Befriend


Befriended.

I've learned something with these earnest friends. Love requires presence and the ability to see the (inherent) value of the other. 

Befriending and living in friendship, or relationship, can be so much more simple if we keep it thus. We carry our needs and wants, expectations and demands into relationship. I'm working to enter each encounter with gratitude for who the other is in my life before anything else. It requires being awake to the moment. (A worthwhile task.) And in that, I have a change to encounter the beauty of God's creation within you.

He comes for petting and sometimes, my hands/our hands and minds are too full. Other times, the boy lays on the floor. Available. An undemanding and forgiving friendship ensues.

December 09, 2016

AdventWord::Promise






Promise
God gives us the responsibility of doing something ourselves about those faithless fears and worldly anxieties that are holding us back. We don’t have to do this alone. We have God’s promise of holding our hand and of helping us.

-Br. David Allen

Parenting? Dog husbandry? Air travel? All hold the promise of the unknown. The adventure. The anxiety. But just knowing the Ruler of the Universe, the High King has my back makes me giddy right there with the anxiousness. So, let's also grab the hand of the one next to us and remind with gentle love: we don't have to do this alone.

Photo credit to my Dear Husband who is off on an adventure himself.

December 08, 2016

AdventWord::Hope





Hope

Converted anxiety is hope. Anxiety is dreadful expectation; hope is expectant desire. They are like cousins to each other. Pray for the conversion of your fretful anxiety into promising hope. If you are anxious just now, you are almost already hopeful.
– Br. Curtis Almquist

What could be added? We plant, anxious to see fruit (or in this case, flowers), fret for the bud to bloom and then, well, we breathe. It really was always going to be fine. I choose converted anxiety.



December 07, 2016

AdventWord::Act



Act
What will we do with the blessings God gives us in answer to prayer? When we pray and God heals us, what will we do with our restored health? When we cry out of our need and God meets that need, what will we do with the resources that have come to us in answer to our prayer?

-Br. David Vryhof

It would seem the call is to response.

December 06, 2016

AdventWord::Be



Be
People in trauma need our presence and our prayer rather than our preaching. We will bear a much more comforting witness to someone facing deep loss by simply being with them, and in so doing, representing God Emmanuel – God with us – by our being with them. Not by our words, but by our presence.


-Br. Curtis Almquist
My experience is this: we're not exactly alike, really. And, I notice the white of the white and the purple of the purple, the qualities, when we're sitting close, being, not homogenized in look or feel. When we can simply be what and who we are in creation. There is the breath of grace of this. 


December 05, 2016

AdventWord::Commit

Commit
In Advent, reflect on a commitment you are considering accepting, or a commitment that needs renewing. In building the house of your life on the rock of God’s committed love, you may discover that you are called to commit; that you cannot claim the Life that God desires for you without it. -Br. Keith Nelson


We wrote words on the back sides of rocks at Mother Daughter camp about six years ago. We promised to nurture or honor the other's dream. She wanted to be more serious about singing. She has a lesson again tomorrow.

The commitment of parental love is deep/steep. God's faithfulness and constance allows me to follow in His wake, doing my best to remember that her dreams were planted by Him. My joy is in my commitment to help her see them to fruit.

Oh, and I still have my rock.

December 04, 2016

AdventWord::Touch

Touch

As followers of Jesus, our responsibility is to listen for those calling out to us, and to respond in love by reaching out and touching the untouchable, reminding them by word and deed of their sacred identity.

– Br. Nicholas Bartoli


I'm touched, constantly by depth of this woman's faith and her love.

She's the first person who held me, who taught me about touch and comfort -- my mom. She is and has been gracious that way, with her touch, her hands, full of gentleness and care. She sent some amazing energy through her fingers when she'd rub my feet or back as a little. To calm or quiet my busy self. And to this day, if she's at my house and the situation affords the moment, I'll put my head in her lap and she'll rub my head as she has for oh, these many years. Instant peace.

She taught me that a touch can say far more than a word. That a gentle brush of her hand across my arm which sometimes came with words of assurance, brings comfort.

She loves me. She wants me to be the hands and feet of the Savior. She provided the example.

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