Posted by: Jennifer | June 20, 2013

Am Writing

Three days ago I finished Words Unspoken, an outstanding book by Elizabeth Musser. In fact, it was so good that I can’t stop thinking about it…the way she wove her characters together, the way she kept the reader guessing, the way her words flowed, and the way she made me want to read all her books. In fact, yesterday I placed on hold every Elizabeth Musser book in my county’s library system.

In my mind, Ms. Musser now sits on a pedestal with three of my other favorite authors: Angela Hunt, Lisa Wingate, and John Grisham. Now I know you may be surprised by John Grisham since his is a completely different genre, but these writers all share one common thread – well researched, keep-me-reading, superbly written books. In fact, I don’t know how they do it. They have something that my love-to-write self just doesn’t quite possess. It’s the difference between a good pianist and a concert pianist, a good tennis player and a pro tennis player. (I use these analogies because I am a pianist and I love to play tennis. Yet, I know there are levels upon levels of expertise above my own abilities.)

But, I also love to write. In fact, my psyche requires me to write. Writing anchors me, fills me with purpose, makes me excited to wake up and start my summer days.

Unfortunately a sad thing happened the other day after I finished Words Unspoken. I concluded that since the books by my favorite authors are so many levels above my own attempts, I needed to quit writing my latest story. A story, by the way, that has been ruminating in my head for at least the last four years. (The words in my head, therefore, would ironically remain unspoken.) Nothing, my logic told me, is worse than a poorly written book, and there are already way too many of them out there. I figured there was no need for me to write one more.

So, for two days I didn’t write. The first day after allowing this destructive thought pattern to take hold, I wrote five words and shut the computer. The next day, I didn’t even try. This morning I woke up, missing my story so badly but yet convinced there was no point and “happened” upon I Thess 5:24. “Faithful is He that calleth you who also will do it.”

I couldn’t get past that verse. I thought of my piano playing. I know I am not a concert pianist but I sure love playing the piano. Whether playing preludes, playing the great hymns, or accompanying the choir, it all fills me with thanksgiving and joy. Yet, when a visiting pianist comes to our church and blesses my heart with concert-level music, I don’t quit playing the piano. So, why did I think I had to quit writing?

God has hardwired me to write. It doesn’t necessarily mean He is requiring me to be a “concert author,” He simply created me with a need to write. I am happiest when I am writing. So, today I will go back to my book, back to those five neglected words from two days ago, and back to solving my characters’ problems.

If I ever feel it is good enough, I will publish it. If not, I will save it for my daughters. But, regardless, today I can say:

#amwriting.

Posted by: Jennifer | December 29, 2010

HOPE

 

“Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast…”  Hebrews 6:19

Hope is a word that keeps coming to mind this Christmas season.  While out shopping for Christmas stocking hangers I came upon some beautiful ones at Target – some said “NOEL” and others “HOPE.”  I thought how appropriate the word HOPE would look in front of our manger scene and purchased it.  Just that one simple word was enough to get my mind off everything to be done and focus on Jesus, my Hope.

I came home and put up those stocking hangers, wrapped the presents and arranged them under the tree, and finished preparing the house for Christmas.  I felt so organized – there was even a hidden wrapping station with random small gifts for unexpected Christmas guests!  I had a dessert table already prepped, a turkey thawing, presents and cards for all our expected guests – it was a wonderful feeling, this feeling of organization and preparation.  And, I had the word HOPE to keep me focused.  It was going to be our most perfect Christmas day ever!

Then, my youngest came down with a fever—a fever that wouldn’t quit, it just kept going and going.  Her older sister followed and then, as usual, I was next.  The flu had hit our household with a vengeance.  My husband got on the phone and cancelled our Christmas dinner, we found a home for our turkey (none of us wanted to eat), and we settled in for what has so far been a 7-day hibernation. 

Tomorrow I will take all the decorations down – and move the family presents to a table for the day when we finally see our Christmas guests.  I believe this is the first Christmas that only four of us got to see all those carefully placed decorations.  But, it hasn’t all been misery.  Since returning to work this fall (hence the long lapse in blog posts), my one wish for Christmas was to spend vast amounts of time with my girls.  And, we’ve had plenty of that!  My youngest is an especially sweet little invalid and has let me cuddle and rock her more this week than ever before.  So, even though it’s been quiet and we’ve felt miserable, it has still been a special time. 

Reading Hebrews 6 this morning, I was reminded that we don’t place our hope in our plans, because plans can be severely altered.  We place them in the One who came, who loved us so much that He died for us.  We place our hope in The Hope, the anchor of our souls!

Posted by: Jennifer | July 12, 2010

Thankful

Dear Friends,
Last year July and two years ago July, both during our church’s annual Vacation Bible School, I was sending out mass emails asking everyone to pray for Sunshine, our eldest daughter.  Last year this time she was in the hospital getting another PICC line put in and her IV meds started once more.  Two years ago, she was undergoing her first of three surgeries.  Ironically, though, it was three years ago July, and also during VBS, that she walked up to me and quietly bumped my arm while I was playing the piano.  I looked up and she simply said, “My ear hurts.”  Yellow discharge was pouring from her ear marking the beginning of the worst ear infection we could  ever have imagined.
Today, however, we went to Vacation Bible School with a healthy, whole daughter!  All day long Sunshine has been saying, “I’m so excited I get to go to VBS this year…Remember after my surgery, I would just come for the singing and then leave because I hurt so bad?…Last year we were in the hospital, Mommy…Do you know I haven’t been to the whole VBS since I was 6?….I can’t believe I get to go to the whole VBS this year!” 
What an amazing day it has been – remembering everything we went through and knowing that with the support of praying friends and the presence of ‘the everlasting arms,’ we are now on the other side of that trial, experiencing a summer that every mother wants their child to have.
My heart is full of gratitude and thankfulness, and tonight I just want everyone to know that!
 
Love,
Jennifer
 
“Enter into His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise…”
Posted by: Jennifer | June 26, 2010

Pause for a View

Hole in the Wall Lighthouse

 

While walking out to the point at Hole in the Wall, Abaco, on our vacation a few weeks ago, I came upon a startling life lesson.  The terrain was rough – our friends called it “moon rock”—and it was rocky, porous, and sharp.  Not only did you have to watch where you stepped but how you stepped!  A good pair of tennis shoes was a must, and keeping close eye on every footfall imperative:  tripping and falling would have been painful! 

Difficult Terrain

 

We were trying to walk to the end of an outcrop – to where we could see the “hole in the wall.”  After awhile, my neck ached from looking down and concentrating on each painstaking step.  It was hot, progress was slow, and having drunk all the water I was carrying, I was thirsty.  I stopped to see how much progress I had made when I became fully aware of the stunning scenery surrounding me.  To my right was a rocky, untouched coastline, rounded off with a perfect half-moon-shaped beach; behind me stood the century-old lighthouse;  and,  startling clear blue water, moving and crashing into the rocks, surrounded me.  The view took my breath away.  

Heading out to the Point

 

View to the right

 

Buoyed by the scenery around me, I looked down at the rocks at my feet, ready to navigate another step, then lifted my head one more time to take in the view.  It was then I realized this was a perfect picture of life!  Problems, pitfalls, complications, choices, and workloads all weigh us down and command our attention.  We become focused solely on what’s at our feet and forget to stop, look around, and thank God for the blessings around us.   Focusing on those negatives, we forget to pause and look at the scenery.  

The "hole in the wall"

 

 

You know, the only way I could see that view was by venturing out along those rocks.  But the only way to enjoy the view, was to stop and take it in.  Today, stop and look at the scenery of your life, focus on the blessings, and you’ll find the energy and thankfulness to take the next step! 

Psalm 92:1  “It is a good thing to give thanks unto the LORD, and to sing praises unto thy name, O most High…” 

For more information on Hole in the Wall, go to http://www.motuiti.com/HitW.html 

Posted by: Jennifer | June 5, 2010

Fear

Jill Kemerer has a wonderful writer’s blog that encourages her readers to set a Friday goal.  Everyone posts their goals and then there is an encouraging accountability that results.   You remember what you posted and then you are more apt to work on the goal.  A further encouragement is the knowledge that Jill is probably praying for you to accomplish what you have set forth to do.

Well, two weeks ago I had a goal and I was embarrassed to post it.  You see, our family was finally preparing for a vacation we had to delay for 3 years:  a trip to the glorious Abacos. And, my goal was to relinquish my fear of travel.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I used to love to travel.  It was a craving born out of a lifetime of living on different continents and being exposed to multiple cultures.  The problem?  Over the years my list of food intolerances has grown to embarrassing proportions.  Besides gluten intolerance/celiac disease, I can’t have dairy, sugar, honey, caffeine and many, many additives.  In addition, I have to be cautious with citrus, nuts, raisins, and bananas.  Consequently, sometimes when I go places I feel I have only two choices:  starve or get sick.  As we prepared, I thought of Jill’s goal for the week and I set my goal to give my fear of the trip to God.  I know that fear robs us of joy and keeps us bound in a predictable boring box.  I prayed that my body would cooperate, that our friends we were visiting would understand (I still find it hard to explain to people why they can’t double-dip their bread knife in my jar of mayo!), and that I would be able to eat without worry and enjoy our long-awaited vacation to its fullest. 

Well, I packed my personal gluten-free staples (Fearn Brown Rice Baking Mix, Quinua noodles, Silk Soy Milk, Mary’s Gone Crackers), my husband sent our friends a list of foods I could eat, and I stuffed my purse with allowable edibles to stave off hunger during the flight.

What a wonderful five days!  We snorkeled reefs and a blue hole, we swam to a deserted beach, we climbed a lighthouse and hiked over rocks surrounded by incredible views.  We saw endangered parrots, we ate fresh-caught fish, and best of all, I never got sick!  Fear wanted to keep me home, but prayer, preparation, and understanding friends allowed for the most glorious five-day trip I can remember! 

Ps 53:5  “There were thy in great fear, where no fear was…”

John 10:10  “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”

Posted by: Jennifer | May 8, 2010

Wonder

  

My youngest has taken it upon herself to become the household butterfly keeper.  Consequently, we have Monarch Caterpillars in various stages of development—chewing up Milkweed leaves and pooping out vast quantities all while residing indoors in different “wasp-protection” cages.  

Caterpillar Storm Rescue

It all started with our Florida Grandma purchasing the girls a Milkweed plant.  We planted it by the kitchen window in the hopes that it would indeed attract some butterflies.  Sure enough, a Monarch Butterfly located the plant and covered it with eggs.  Once the caterpillars hatched, they were watched carefully, the girls counting the days until they would make chrysalises.  But then, one morning, I heard the girls screaming in dismay:  a wasp was systematically flying around the plant stinging first one then the next caterpillar.  I ran outside to kill that wasp, but it was too late – all our almost-fully grown caterpillars were dead. 

Caterpillar Ride

Ever since then, Sweetie has taken it upon herself to scour the garden, round up as many caterpillars as she can find (Milkweed proliferates), and bring them indoors for safe keeping.  She goes out every morning, collecting Milkweed leaves for them to chew on, cleans the cage out (because the site of all that poop in a cage in my house makes me green), and in the interim, uses the caterpillars as her own real live Littlest Pets.  We have caterpillars riding in miniature strollers, caterpillars riding in trains, caterpillars sleeping in Barbie bathroom sinks, and escaped caterpillars crawling across their own personal Sahara – our endless, dune-colored carpet.  The caterpillars even get measured and named:  Tiney, Spikie, Mr. Crawl (my personal favorite), Cutie, Tiger, Mike….  The problem is, once they form chrysalises, they become nameless once more – we’re not sophisticated enough to distinguish one from another.  

Once a fully grown caterpillar is ready to morph into a chrysalis, it will go to the top of the cage and hang upside down for hours.  The other morning, we were counting our chrysalises, when I noticed that one of these inverted caterpillars was very dark.  I was just telling the girls that we should check it every few minutes when, right before our eyes it started to change!  I always imagined it would ooze the green chrysalis, but no, it simply changes:  starting at the bottom of the inverted bend, black and yellow morph into green!  Then, once it’s almost all green, the black legs and antennae are pushed up towards the top and the now-green pupa starts to spin, twisting around and around for about 30 seconds until this black “waste” falls off to the bottom of the cage.  The entire process takes about 4 minutes, and we saw it!   Enthralled?  Completely!  Captivated?  Totally!  Filled with wonder?  Absolutely!  

As a homeschooling mom, my ultimate educational goal is the creation of wonder – that oft-illusive magic that makes for the perfect learning environment.  Well, that morphing caterpillar created more wonder in 4 minutes than I’ve been able to fabricate all year long!  I’m still telling people about it and the girls are still talking about it.  

(L) just emerged; (R) 2 hours "old"

Today, we had 6 butterflies emerge.  Once more, we sat in front of the cage, and I had someone keep guard at all times because we could tell a butterfly was on its way out!  Sure enough, on “2nd watch”, Sunshine started yelling and Sweetie and I came running.  There was that brand new butterfly, emerging from its tiny chrysalis!  Within just a few minutes, its wet wings were dripping and spreading out.  Then, a few hours later, it  started beating those wings, and we released it.  We watched it flit through the garden then land on the closest milkweed, ready to start the whole cycle all over again!  

Now that is WONDER-FUL! 

"The Butterfly Has Landed!"

Psalms 8:3  “When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers…” 

Posted by: Jennifer | April 24, 2010

Deferred Hope?

Proverbs 13:12  “Hope deferred maketh the heart sick…”

This past week I’ve had a “sick” heart over something I’ve been hoping and dreaming about for a long time.  Yet, all week long, God has placed specific signs in my path that have shown me it’s time to set that dream aside.  Feeling rather down about it, I asked my husband if he knew of a good counter verse to Prov. 13:12 and his instantaneous response was Ruth 1:12:

 “I have hope, if I should have an husband also to night…” 

Yes, he’s a funny guy, but aside from a good laugh it didn’t give me much help, until he mentioned Proverbs 3:13-18.

Now, those verses in Proverbs 3 are the classic verses on wisdom and at first I didn’t get the connection.  How were the ‘wisdom verses’ going to help me with my ‘deferred hope?’  Then I reread verse 18:

 “She (wisdom) is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her.” 

And, realization hit: God gives wisdom and I needed the wisdom to know the difference between a personal dream and God’s will for me for this stage of my life.  If I have the wisdom to step back from that dream and consider that God knows my future and my ‘expected end’ (Jer. 29:11), then letting the dream go is not giving up but a realization that God has something better for me…

At the same time that God has been closing doors on my dream all week, He has been opening them faster than I could ever imagine regarding something completely different, something I had let go of years ago.  You know, the world tells us to push, push, push and never give up.  But, God tells us to pray, seek His face, and then we’ll have the wisdom to know whether or not we should keep pushing or whether we should set our plans aside in order to allow place for the new direction He wants to take us.

I don’t know what your dreams are this morning, but I suspect at some time in your recent past your hope has been deferred and it has made you heartsick.  May you remember, as I have, that the ‘God who knows the future’ is holding your hand! 

  Today, I place my hope in Him, the One who anchors my soul. (Hebrews 13:5)

Posted by: Jennifer | April 17, 2010

A Personal Relationship?

The following post is an excerpt from a talk I recently gave to our local Christian Women’s Connection.  The response was so positive, I decided to post it to my blog.  Enjoy :)

Half a world away but not too many years ago, I made my entrance into the world.  The daughter of missionaries, my Dad tells the story of how they made him the courier for the life saving blood that was delivered from one hospital to mine where I was struggling to stay alive.  Three blood transfusions later, I was finally in the safety zone and allowed to come home.  That blood, that was so carefully placed on the passenger seat of his car and driven across the busy city of Johannesburg, South Africa, saved my life. 

By the time I was 6, I remember feeling pretty smug about my eternal future.  You see, with my father as the pastor of our church, and my mother as my Sunday School teacher, I felt like I had been handed heaven on a platter.   Unfortunately, all I had was knowledge of God without a personal relationship with Him. 

Now in the grand scheme of things, there isn’t a whole lot a little 6-year-old girl growing up in a preacher’s home can do that could be labeled as “bad”.  I know I fought with my brothers, I’m sure I goaded my older sister, I do remember washing my baby brother’s hair with baby oil, but are any of those things seriously worthy of an eternal punishment? 

Well, I didn’t write the Rule Book, God did, and according to the Bible, “all our righteousness are as filthy rags” in His sight.  That concept, that ON MY OWN I couldn’t be good enough for God didn’t hit home until I went through a phase where I would wake up in the morning and promise myself that I wouldn’t do anything wrong the whole day.  As we all know, that just isn’t possible and it began to bother me. 

What made it worse was the next week, sitting in Sunday School, with my white bobby socks and black “shiny shoes” as I called them, my Sunday School teacher Mom was teaching and all I remember is one thing she said – that going to church every Sunday wasn’t enough to get you to heaven. I remember sitting up straighter and thinking, “Well, my Mom is the teacher, so it’s different.”  As if she had read my mind, she went on to say that nobody could get to heaven just because their Mom was their teacher or their Dad was the preacher.  I couldn’t believe it!  That meant I wasn’t going to heaven?  She went on to explain to that group of first grade children, that Jesus had died on the cross for all our wrong doings and that His blood could wash away all of our sins.  All we had to do was ask Him. 

That was it?  God’s Son, Jesus, whose birth we celebrated at Christmas, had grown up and died on a cross as payment for my sins?  And there was the beautiful simplicity of it all.  It wasn’t what we could do, nor where we came from, nor who we were, but the fact that each person had an individual responsibility to accept Jesus’ gift for themselves. 

Some time passed before I finally invited Jesus into my life.  Eventually, though, I remember talking to my Mom and asking her to pray with me.  I don’t remember what words I said, but I remember praying and asking Jesus to take away my sins (no matter how insignificant they might have seemed to the world around me) and come into my life.  That image, of sitting alongside my Mother on the edge of her bed, praying to accept Jesus, is forever imprinted in my mind. 

I remember feeling such relief afterwards, knowing that I no longer had to wonder about heaven, knowing that heaven was something I could count on, knowing that the God who made the world sent His Son Jesus to pay for the sins of the world, and that included a little girl living in Johannesburg, South Africa.  At birth, my Dad had brought me the blood that saved my life.  At 6 ½ years old, the knowledge that “the blood of Jesus Christ…cleanses away sin” saved my soul. 

Maybe you have never asked God to be in charge of your life.  Maybe you want that peace and contentment of knowing you have a personal relationship with the God of the universe.  But what does that really mean?  We can’t see Him, and this claim some have that Christ is a part of their life may sound strange.  So what exactly is a relationship with Jesus?

Well, for one, it’s the knowledge that I am never alone.  In the New Testament of the Bible, Jesus promises us in Hebrews 13:5 that He will neither leave us nor forsake us.  I left South Africa at 18 and flew halfway around the world to the US to come to college, and sleeping all alone in a hotel in Belgium I was lonely, but never alone.  Having my husband travel to remote places where I can’t contact him, I’ve gotten lonely, but I’m never alone.  Spending hours cocooned with a migraine I’ve gotten lonely, but I’ve never been alone.

Secondly, a personal relationship with Christ is the comfort that God knows each and everything I am going through.  There’s a little children’s song that says “if you read your Bible and pray every day you will grow, grow, grow.”  (My own daughter used to sing the 2nd part of the song that says “neglect your Bible, forget to pray and you will shrink, shrink, shrink – only she substituted “shrimp” for shrink!) Anyway, how can I know God is intimately involved in my day to day life?  Because when I read my Bible daily, the verses I read for that day turn out to be the verses I need for that day! 

Thirdly, it’s the knowledge that I can talk to Him anytime, anywhere.  For two years we went through a very stressful time with the health of my eldest daughter.  I would get off the phone with a doctor and feel my neck tightening, my nerves jangling, and I would just want to fall apart, but all I’d have to do was tell Jesus.  I tell Him what I’m thinking, what I’m feeling, and I sense His calming presence.  Sometimes I’ll open the Bible and start reading and as the words wash over me, I’ll feel the tension ease from my shoulders and my body will visibly relax. 

Wouldn’t you like to have a personal relationship with Jesus for yourself?  It’s the simplest, most straightforward life-altering self-improvement program that you could ever wish for.  It’s free, and you are the sole beneficiary.  All it requires is an admission to God that there is wrong in your life, that you believe that He sent His Son Jesus to die on the cross and shed His blood for all the wrong we have committed, and that He will take away that wrong if you ask Him to.

Your prayer could go something like this:

“Dear God, I thank you for who You are and for what You have done.  I thank You that You shed your blood on the cross all those years ago for all the wrongs that I have done.  I confess these to You and ask You to remove them from my record.  Please come into my life and be my personal Savior.  In Your name, Amen.”

Now, that’s a prayer that can be worded a million ways with the same outcome.  But if you have prayed that prayer, you now have a relationship with God for eternity…welcome to His family!!!  In order for that relationship to grow, spending time in daily Bible reading and prayer will draw you closer to Him every day.  Also, finding a good Bible-preaching church where you can be encouraged by others is invaluable.  If today, you have prayed and asked Christ to be a part of your life, I would love to hear from you.

Thank you for reading my own personal testimony.  I hope that what you have read will stay with you.  Remember, I was saved once as a baby by the blood my father brought to the hospital.  But when I was six, I was saved for eternity by the blood my heavenly Father provided on the cross.  And this same gift of eternity with Christ can be yours!

Posted by: Jennifer | April 3, 2010

Considering the Lilies

It’s Easter and seeing all the Easter Lilies for sale in our local stores I am so tempted to buy myself a pot.  But then I think of the other non-Florida plants I buy (tulips and hydrangeas) and their quick demise and I remember that some flowers are just not meant for Florida.  But, I still love those Easter Lilies.  They have such a regal look, as if they are their own loudspeakers proclaiming the glory of Easter. 

How appropriate that I should read in this morning’s devotions that we are to “Consider the Lilies…” 

Matthew 6:28-30,32,33 

And why take ye thought for raiment?  Consider the Lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:  And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.  Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field….shall he not much more clothe you…?  For your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.  But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. 

You know, I used to worry about clothes, especially at Easter time.  It was at age 16 when our family was in the US that I realized Americans had this awful (awful to a 16-year-old who couldn’t compete materially) tradition – buying all new clothes for Easter Sunday.  Then, many years later, when I had my own children, I disliked the tradition even more – not only did I have to have a new looking outfit for myself, I needed one for my whole family!  My husband and I were barely out of graduate school and Easter finery simply wasn’t on our list of necessities.  

Somewhere along the way I came to my senses and decided that Easter shouldn’t be about worrying about an outfit or lack thereof – whether there was money for one or not.  To be honest, I had gone from disliking the tradition, to self-righteous indignation at the amount of money and time wasted on it (if half the money spent on Easter clothing was sent to mission work etc. etc.), to a complete change of attitude.  Both worry and a self-righteous attitude were wrong, and neither mindset could invite God’s blessing.  Besides, there were those beautiful verses, admonishing me to “Consider the lilies…”  

I finally realized that Easter wasn’t about how I should or should not spend our money, but about having the right perspective:  had I invited a friend to our glorious Sunday Easter celebration, had I shared the beauty of the Easter Story with someone new, and had I given God and His Son’s resurrection first place in my heart and mind?  Matthew 6:33, only five verses after the ‘lilies’ verse, promises if we seek first the kingdom of God, all “these things” will be added to us.  

The irony of it all, when I switched from despising the new-clothes Easter tradition to simply focusing on what Easter is about, my girls were suddenly deluged with hand-me-downs.  They have so many Easter Sunday dresses, I’ve given many away – there are simply not enough Sundays to wear them all!  Today on the day before Easter, instead of having to shop and stress, we can go to their overflowing closets and choose from the generosity of so many friends.  

So, this morning as I read these beautiful verses, the timing amazed me.  For the first time I realized that the girls’ closets full of dresses were God’s way of showing me that adjusting my heart attitude led to a wonderful blessing.  My Heavenly Father truly knew what we needed (vs.32)! 

May you have a wonderful day tomorrow dressing your family up, taking pictures, and making memories.  But above all else, place the God of the resurrection in first place and “Consider the lilies…”

Posted by: Jennifer | March 13, 2010

A Reflection of His Glory

       Every morning I do my best to spend some quiet time with God before the children are up. I always sit facing a window that looks out on my neighbor’s oak and palm trees. One morning as I sat staring out that window, I noticed a single strand of a spider’s web hanging from an oak branch, the industrious spider suspended between tree and ground. At first the strand was scarcely visible, but as the sun rose higher, the sunlight caught the strand making it glow brightly. There it was, one tiny thread, visible from probably 20 feet away for only one reason – it was reflecting the sun.
       The poignancy was too obvious to ignore. There I sat, Bible in my lap, day timer open on the table before me, praying over the day ahead, and wondering how one seemingly inconsequential life filled with so many limitations could truly impact those around me. Fame as the world views it would never be mine, fortune might never grace my future, but if the Son of God was reflected by my life that day, I could shine for His glory. And, a life lived reflecting His glory is a life of lasting consequence! 

Matthew 5:16
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
 

Sunrise at Jupiter Beach

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