Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Eleh ha-devarim....These Are the Words...


How can I forget these things?
Why does He have to remind me of all He has for me?
Why do I wait until worry, anxiety and panic set in before I reach out to Him?

I began a study from Deuteronomy this week. 
One would think that Deuteronomy can be dull and repetitive; I used to. 
But in just one week God has shown me so much that I overlooked or took for granted.

Deuteronomy is actually called Eleh ha-devarim in Hebrew, which means "these are the words." 
That is from the first line of Deuteronomy as Moses begins to remind this new generation of Israelites of the law given to them at Mount Sinai. But the Lord reminded me that every scripture is God-breathed; therefore, every word in the Bible is His. So no matter what book I am reading, no matter which chapter or verse... every time I pick up the Bible, "these are the words" of God.

I'm facing some new challenges ahead and I desperately need the Lord to guide me. 
So, I seek the "word of the Lord" by reaching for His Word. 
And in it, I am reminded of:


"Everything that goes into a life of pleasing God 
has been miraculously given to us by getting to know, 
personally and intimately, 
the One who invited us to God.
2 Peter 1:3 (MSG)

Monday, January 7, 2013

You Are Not Forgotten...

"I will not forget you.
See, I have engraved you on the palms of My hands..."
Isaiah 49:15b, 16

My sweet,  young friend, Stephanie, led us in worship at church yesterday. She has a passionate heart for the Lord and loves to worship. At one point, she stopped and told us about a book she had just read. Expecting her first child, she had a baby shower the day before and one of her gifts was Max Lucado's book, God Thinks You're Wonderful. In this little book, is the reminder that

God loves you. 
God knows you. 
God has your name written on the palm of His hand.

It is so easy in this great big world to feel we are lost or forgotten. Other people are facing issues that we sometimes think take all of God's time and attention.

Aunt Susie is going through a divorce...
Mrs. Thompson is facing cancer...
A co-worker's daughter has committed suicide...
A neighbor is facing foreclosure/eviction...
A company is closing it's doors and many will lose their jobs...

With all billions of people in the world, each facing crises of their own, it can make our own problems seem small and insignificant - at least in the eyes of an all-mighty God.

But Stephanie reminded us that He has not forgotten you. In fact, He cannot forget you; your name is engraved on His hand. Not written so that it can be erased or washed off, but engraved!

After our time of worship, we went into communion. One of our young men, Evan Coleman, led us in communion with his father, Pastor Bill. Evan spoke of taking communion as a young boy and focusing on the remembrance aspect, remembering Jesus' sacrifice all those years ago. But it is also a remembrance of each and every day. A reminder that we can bring to His table all those things we carry around with us. And we can leave them there...

His table is huge and there is room for each one of us to come and eat, and bring our burdens and leave them on the table. It is a time to remember ... but also a time to surrender.

Come to the table of mercy
Prepared with the wine and the bread.
All who are hungry and thirsty
Come and your soul will be fed.
Come at the Lords invitation
Receive from His nail-scarred hand.
(Claire Coniger)
1991 Integrity's Hosanna! Music (Admin. by Crossroad Distributors Pty. Ltd.) 
Word Music, LLC (Admin. by CopyCare Pacific Pty.Ltd.)

Come to His table...
Remember His Love
Remember His Mercy
Remember His Provision
Remember His Healing
Remember His Kindness
Remember His Goodness...

Remember that He remembers you!

"I will not forget you!"
Isaiah 49:15b

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Momma, Isn't He Beautiful?!

I saw my Momma yesterday....

Those of you who know me or have followed this journey for a while are probably wondering how that could be. You see, on January 3, 2011 I was standing in my kitchen in Edmonds, Washington preparing dinner for my family when my phone rang. It was my sister calling from Texas. My mom and her sister had been in a car accident. Aunt Jo passed away shortly after arriving at the hospital; Momma was being airlifted to a hospital in Dallas. She was kept on life support until I could get there and we could say our final goodbye. We had a double funeral for these two sisters who had done everything together for more than 80 years.

Last night, my oldest son Matthew and his wife, Ally had their first child. Little James Steven was born weighing in at 9 pounds, 5 ounces! Matthew told me that when he was born, he looked at him and said, "I have a two year old!" But he is a beautiful little boy. He has Ally's chin and Matthew's nose, an amazing blend of these two precious parents.

Momma would have loved this little child. As we were driving to the hospital I was thinking about her, wishing she could be here to see him. And I am convinced that she does see him.

...And I saw her last night.

Whenever Momma took a bite of something that she didn't really like, she would furrow her brow, scrunch her eyes shut, wrinkle her nose and pooch out her lips. It was a look only Momma could make - until last night!

As I got ready to leave the hospital, I handed little James back to his daddy. He didn't really like being disturbed, but without making a sound, he furrowed his brow, scrunched up his little face, and pooched out his lips. I said to Matthew, "That's your Grandma Brown!" He said, "I know! He's done that before and I thought 'That's Grandma!'"

Matthew and Ally have just begun an amazing journey with this little one. But it is a journey that began generations ago.

"I will establish My covenant as an everlasting covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you for the generations to come, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you."
Genesis 17:7

This was the covenant God made with Abraham. My grandparents raised my parents in this covenant; my parents raised my sisters and me in this covenant. And my husband and I continued in this covenant with our children. Now it's their turn. This heritage of faith is being passed on to the next everlasting covenant. When Matthew posted the announcement on his face book page, he wrote, "Look out world, a new man of God just touched down!!"

As I sat there last night holding this precious new little life, I thought, "Momma, isn't he beautiful?" And with that scrunched up little face I heard her say, "Yes, sweetheart, he is!"