Beit Yanai beach – rain, wind and waves Photo by Sigal Ben Amram
Good morning, beloved,
Rain on the windows, coffee in hand, a fire in our fireplace, piano music in the background, quiet. We have heat, friends. Yes, a nice fire, but our heat is fully functional. I am thankful. I wrote on my Facebook page, we have heat, WOOHOO! or some such nonsense, and I realized how NOT having something has truly shifted my focus. To be grateful, to be thankful, to see with new eyes what I take for granted in my life. How quickly life passes me by, I stare, this morning, at our chairs we have begun using for school and I know who sits in each chair. I see them. Each day I have is a gift. A day with pain gives me perspective to say, to savor, to enjoy a day without.
I played out in the snow with two of my kids, talking with them, planning, dreaming how big our snow fort would become. I would stop and just stare at them. Talk with them. Do you
Rhoen Schneetreiben Source: M. Klüber Fotografie
ever just stop and talk with children? Sit next to them. Not to hurry to the next activity, but to savor, to enjoy a moment with children. They have the most amazing things to say. The words. Their imaginations.
I just have to stop myself. Stop the hurrying. Listen.
When I get all frantic, rushing them, pushing them, the focus of our house becomes me. I lose the chance to help my children, weaving in and out, encouraging, prompting with kindness and agape. Instead I become a clanging bell, a sounding brass. I take center stage. In my last post I discovered these NOT words in verse 4 keep self at the center. Now for verse 5 of 1 Corinthians 13:
5 Love is not ·rude [disrespectful], is not ·selfish [self-serving], and ·does not get upset with others [is not easily provoked/angered]. Love does not ·count up [keep a record of] wrongs that have been done.
The root word of this word rude/disrespectful is to be deformed, indecent, unseemly.
29 ·God knew them before he made the world [L For those whom he foreknew…], ·and he chose them […he also predestined/chose beforehand] to be ·like [molded to the pattern of; conformed to the image of] his Son so that Jesus would be the firstborn [C the preeminent one, but also indicating others will follow] of many brothers and sisters [C Jesus’ resurrection confirms that his followers will also share in God’s glory]. Romans 8 EXB
So either we can be deformed by fleshly behaviors, or we can be conformed, transformed into the image of His Son, right?
Not selfish. Not self -serving..to crave, demand something from someone (zēteō).
2 ·If so […then], ·make me very happy [L fulfill/complete my joy] by ·having the same thoughts [being like-minded/of one mind], sharing the same love, and having one ·mind [heart; soul] and ·purpose [goal; mind]. 3 When you do things, do not let ·selfishness [rivalry; selfish ambition] or pride be your guide. Instead, be humble and
View of the Sierra, fresh powder Photo by Introvert
give more ·honor [regard; value] to others than to yourselves. 4 Do not ·be interested only in your own life [look out for your own interests], but ·be interested in the lives of others [look out for others’ interests]. Philippians 2 EXB
Does not get upset with others, not easily angered..the greek:( paroxynō) to make sharp, sharpen, to irritate, provoke, arouse to anger.
19 My ·dear [L beloved] brothers and sisters [C fellow believers], [L under-stand/know this:] ·always be willing to listen and slow to speak. Do not become angry easily [L be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger; Prov. 17:28], 20 ·because anger will not help you live the right kind of life God wants [L because human anger does not produce God’s righteousness]. James 1 EXB
Does not count up, keep a record of wrongs…
two Greek words (logizomai): to reckon, count, compute, calculate, count over AND (kakos) of what is morally or ethically “evil,” whether of persons, or qualities, emotions, passions, deeds
Do you notice that these words, these descriptions mar the person? Change us. Disfigure.
These last few days I have gotten up to finish writing this blog and it just hasn’t been done. I can’t get past this idea of disfigurement by sin and record keeping, and not getting upset, not being controlled by emotions. When I am in pain, (emotional or physical), my filters, my control goes on the blink. Hear that? I. I. I wonder if all the crazy things happening in my house, my children’s lives, my life, Joshua’s bring me exactly where He wants me. Out of control. Letting go.
Release. There’s chaos here, yet He is up to something. He is not letting His child go. He is asking His child to let go.
36 One of the Pharisees ·asked [invited] Jesus to eat with him, so Jesus went into the Pharisee’s house and ·sat at the table[L reclined; C at a formal meal guests would recline at a low table with their feet stretched out behind them]. 37 [L And look/T behold] A ·sinful [immoral] woman in the town learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house. So she brought an alabaster ·jar [vial; flask] of perfume 38 and stood behind Jesus at his feet, ·crying [weeping]. She began to ·wash [wet; drench] his feet with her tears, and she ·dried [wiped] them with her hair, kissing them many times and ·rubbing [anointing]them with the perfume. 39 When the Pharisee who asked Jesus to come to his house saw this, he thought to himself, “If ·Jesus [L this person] were a prophet, he would know ·that the woman touching him is a sinner [L who is touching him and what kind of woman she is—that she is a sinner]!” Luke 7 EXB
I see myself in both of these people in this scene. Pharisee judging. Assessing a situation, seeing himself as better. My brain can be such a train wreck. Yet, here is something I am realizing HUGE. The Pharisee ate a meal with Jesus but this meal did not bring the answers he wanted. He wanted Jesus to measure this woman by his standards. Here was this Rabbi allowing this woman to touch Him! Yuck! After the Pharisee walked away from the table, He walked away from Life. The Living Water. Living. Jesus didn’t give him the answers he desired.
However, the woman walked away from the table with her sins forgiven. Healed. HEALED. I want to be at the table with Jesus and walk with Him in peace. I don’t want to walk away from Life, believing Satan’s lies, whispers.
These last few days have been more like the woman for me. Weeping at the feet of Jesus…realizing the weight of my attitudes, my frustration..Lord, I want to walk away from this table with You this morning healed. Restored. I confess. I hurt. I ask for healing, from the inside out. If you don’t heal my body, don’t. Heal me heart.
Remind me with Your holiness, Your grace. Remind me in the songs we sing this day. Remind me in the candle. Remind me in the eyes of my sweet children. Thank You for Your tenderness towards this woman. Me. And towards those who read this, may they meet You this morning at their table. Lord, may You open the floodgates of Your love. Breath on each one of these precious souls. Give them the breath of LIFE! As my day begins, I begin, we begin with You.
48 Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”
49 The people ·sitting at the table [L reclining together; 7:36] began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”
50 Jesus said to the woman, “·Because you believed, you are saved from your sins [L Your faith has saved you]. Go in peace.” Luke 7 EXB
Go in peace, friends. You are saved from your sins this day. Believe on Him…forgiveness…
Ann Voskamp, Joy Dare
3 Surprise Gifts, Unexpected Grace:
169. The gift, the reminder of His forgiveness by just looking out my window at the bliss of clean, white snow on my rooftops. The rest of my snow is trampled by little feet.
170. The gift of time this morning to finish this blog, to be healed.
171. The gift of my house warm.
Pray on, friends. Pray on.