Tuesday, November 27, 2007

A troubled heart

My quiet times recently have been in Matthew or John. This morning, I spent time in the 14th chapter of John which begins right smack in the middle of a long intimate conversation that Jesus is having with his beloved friends after the last supper. He had just told them several things which were deeply disturbing to them all. Here at the start of Chapter 14 he quiets them with the words: "Let not your heart be troubled".

They had been unable to comprehend what he had told them as they sat and conversed around that table. They were in emotional distress. These mighty men of God were confused about their future. They did not understand the turn of events that were surrounding them, and they felt that they would be unable to cope with their life if Jesus were to leave them.

How did Jesus comfort them?
What would He say to those He loved so deeply and had invested so much of His life in?
He had so little time left with these men and He had to make His words penetrate through their fear and their confusion.

First of all He told them to remember that even though He was not with them, they would be on His mind. He was going ahead of them to prepare them a place. He would not forget them. He had big plans for them.

Next, He reminds them to "Believe". Simply Believe? Simply? Simple to Jesus maybe, but it hard for them. Hard for me too sometimes.

Then He reminds them that they can still communicate to Him through prayer. Today, communication is so easy with our phones, mail and emails, but it was not that way back then. When someone left your presence, they were often gone. And Jesus was telling them that he would be dying! It was a foreign concept to them to imagine communicating with Him after His death. They still had not fully grasped that He was God's son. Jesus was telling them that He would be listening and waiting to respond to their prayers. He could see them and hear them.

I can just see their skeptical faces.

Often, I find myself facing many of the same fears and confusion that those disciples faced. I hear God talking, but I can not comprehend. I still, in spite of my years of living with Him, am side-tracked by the ridiculous notion that God is letting my life get out of control. I can not see Him, therefore He is not real. I can not audibly hear Him, therefore He does not hear me. I have no tangible proof of what Heaven is like, therefore I struggle with it being a sustaining hope.

His last hours were spent encouraging those He loved. Calming their troubled hearts. That blessed me this morning.
It seems that I often find myself troubled about a lot of things.
I have important questions with no good answers.
My circumstances make no sense to me.
But one thing that seems to have kept me going is that I know God loves me.

Friday, November 23, 2007


Today at lunch I received a phone call telling me that a beloved friend, Anne Coppenger, had finally received a word from her Lord to come on home. She has fiercely battled ovarian cancer for over a couple of years and I know well how she had dreaded this day.
I recall the first time I saw her in my office doorway after her diagnosis in 2004. She told me that she had "many options! And,.. " she said "if I can't beat it, then,...I will go home to be with my mom!"
Anne was one of the famous BASK group. BASK was a title for the meetings of Becky, Anne, Susan, and Kay, four friends who came together (for lunch of course!) a couple of time per month to share our hearts, check our spiritual path, and pray for one another. Anne's health has been the subject of so many of our prayers and tonight, I know that she is completely healed. She is, as I type this, in the presence of the Lord and Savior and also in the embrace of her beloved mother. What an amazing thing!
Anne BASK-ette, you have changed me in wonderful ways. I will treasure the memories of our BASK moments and will always recall that they, and you, were instrumental in my warp speed spiritual growth at the lowest time in my life. I look forward to seeing you again. Until I get there, you know what to do.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Thanksgiving Eve

Thanksgiving Eve. Tomorrow's dinner will be shared by those I love, and the empty places will seem large.

The things I am thankful for:

**My husband: No other woman feels loved as much as me.

**My daughters: God gave me the best ones.

**My parents, brothers and their families and in-laws: It is good to experience life with all of them in my corner.

**Friends. The ones who let me cry, the ones who make me laugh, and the ones who do both.



**Rocking chairs

**My hope of Heaven

**Jacuzzi tubs



**Buffalo River

**Rainy nights

The thing I am most grateful for is that God loves me.