Category Archives: Lost in Thought

Sunshine and Rain.

Yesterday it rained all day.

I started work at 6am and pumped gas in the rain until 3pm. When it was slow the girl I was working with taught me a card game. I don’t usually like card games, but really like it. It was fun. I think it was called Gin? I got that old ‘raindrops keep falling on my head, but that doesn’t mean my eyes will soon be turning red…” song stuck in my head. No one expected me to be happy, but I was, and I told them so.

When I got home I showered, put on some extra layers of clothing and went back out the door. My dad offered me his rain coat, but I’d been wearing one all day, so I stuck with my yellow hoodie. It wasn’t raining very hard. I went to the park. It’s pretty there when it’s raining, and less crowded than on sunny days.

Yesterday was fantastic.

Today the sun came out.

I didn’t know what to expect when I left the house at 5:45. There isn’t usually sun by that time. But sure enough, the sun came up today. I suppose it came up yesterday as well, but I sure didn’t see it. I played cards and pumped gas until ten and then a different co-worker came in.

No one could comment on the beautiful weather without griping about the day before. It seemed like they wanted to dwell on yesterday, on the rain. “It’s such a nice day isn’t it, oh my, not like YESTERDAY? That was awful wasn’t it?” I told them I hadn’t minded it, it had been all right with me. I wonder if they realize they wouldn’t have appreciated that sun if they hadn’t had a day of rain. My sister and the most beautiful baby in the world came to see me, and my co-worker worked a little extra so I could hold her for a minute. I got free chips, and my sister bought me a doughnut.

Now I need to shower, then I think I’ll head over to the park. I’ve been asking Jesus for sunshine for a couple days, so I think I’ll go thank Him for awhile.

Thus far, today’s been a pretty fantastic day.

I will praise the Lord at all times.
I will constantly speak his praises.

I will boast only in the Lord;
let all who are helpless take heart.

Come, let us tell of the Lord’s greatness;
let us exalt his name together.

I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me.
He freed me from all my fears.

Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy;
no shadow of shame will darken their faces.

Psalms 34:1-5 (NLT)

I’ve been working on a post to sum up my summer. I feel neglectful when God blesses me so greatly and I don’t give Him the glory… via blog post. So I’ll get on that soon. 🙂

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Why I Just Can’t

I can’t possibly write a blog because:
– My computer was reformatted and I can’t find the disc for the program I used to write my blogs and keep them organized.
– I can’t find Adobe Photoshop so I can’t make a new less Toronto-y banner.
– I used to have files filled with random pictures and I lost most of them, blogs need pictures.
– I don’t have enough crazy little children running around to inspire me.
– I have ZERO drive.
Never mind the fact that:
– I used to write everything on Notepad.
– I used to make anything I wanted with Microsoft Paint.
– I have a fully functioning camera.
– I have never been so amazed at my God’s awesome power and creativity as I am in watching my beautiful little niece grow.
– I have always had zero drive. Yet this is my sixtieth post. He’s strong in my weakness and through His strength I can do anything.

Anything?
Even write a blog?
Yeah, I guess I can.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. -2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)


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To Write.

If a picture says a thousand words I want to be able to draw out each one. To arrange the words so perfectly on my canvas that the image stands clear and vivid. To transfer this picture from my mind to yours by merely tracing out letter after letter.
Perfect word after perfect word, forming perfect sentence after perfect sentence.
For the words to draw you in. Draw you into more than the visual.

So that you are no longer at some distant place looking into the picture but the words become a pathway guiding you into and throughout it.
_

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Filled?

I was sitting reading earlier when my dad asked if I had a recycling bin in my room. It’s recycle night. I ran over to my room to retrieve the bin and heard music from Phil’s room above mine. I stopped, wondering what adolescent junk he might be listening to, I underestimated this adolescent. The song was ‘The Motions’ by Matthew West, I nodded in approval and continued with my recycling.

Later I caught myself humming the song to myself so I decided to play it.

I don’t wanna go through the motions,
I don’t wanna go one more day,
Without your all consuming passion inside of me…

As I stood and listened I had a strange feeling. In Toronto when I heard that song I could smile, give an ‘Amen!’ and continue about my business. When I was in Toronto if someone told me they didn’t know where to serve God I would have told them, “Oh, serve Him everywhere and in everything of course!” It seemed obvious there, as I woke up in the morning and knew much of His call on my day. I knew the people I was called to serve. The children and their families knew that I did what I did because I love Jesus and I loved them. That made it easy.

I thought of the line: “Without your all consuming passion inside of me” And my mind wandered to another thing that’s been confusing me.

On the last day that I was in Toronto I went to Toronto Alliance Church. It’d been my home away from home, or church away from.. my home church rather. It was Pentecost Sunday and Pastor Bill spoke on being filled with the Holy Spirit. At the end the congregation prayed for each other and sang: “Jesus O Jesus, come and fill your lambs”. It was a beautiful service.

When I got home I was babysitting my niece and my sister told me to read her book, “Forgotten God” by Francis Chan. A book about the Holy Spirit. I read it and returned quickly as she’d been reading it.

Then there was the second Sunday after I was home, the first where my pastor had spoken since my return. There in my small town Baptist church my pastor spoke about the Holy Spirit, even about being filled by the Spirit. When the sermon had ended we sang our closing hymn and tears streamed down my face: “Jesus O Jesus, come and fill your lambs”

God is so in control, and so capable of driving His point home.
Sometimes I think I miss the application part of His lessons though.

Have I changed since God brought this all to my attention? Am I more Spirit-filled? More aware of His guidance? His presence? I’m not sure.

I am however quite sure that He won’t stop teaching what He needs me to know any time soon.

Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.

– John 15:4

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The Ends of the Earth.

Jesus, I believe in you
and I would go,
to the ends of the earth
to the ends of the earth
for you, alone are the son of God…
and all the world will see
that you are God…

We were singing that at my church in downtown Toronto yesterday.
I realized something that I thought was kind of ironic.

Right now, the end of the earth that I’m being called to is… my hometown.

I love Toronto.
A lot.

But right now I really feel that God wants me to go home. I’m excited to be with my family. Plus I know there’s a lot of things I have to learn that are best learned there. I also have high hopes for lots of Jesus time in there in the midst of family and working.

I’ve got a little less then a week left in this city. It’s almost time to say good bye to my Victory kids, to try to see some of my Peace kids one last time before I leave, and part from friends who have become family over the last three years of my life.

Then it’s Kingsville. Finding a job. Getting my license. Growing up a little.

Learning from the wisdom of my parents. Hanging out with little Philip-ay. Bothering Ronald and Toady. Getting to know my not-nearly-as -little-as-last-time-I-saw-her niece.

And serving Jesus right where I am, in my little hometown.

I think I might be ready for this.
We’ll see.

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My God is Father to the Fatherless.

Yesterday my roommates and I sat in our living room talking about how wonderful our fathers are. Talking about some of the loving things our fathers have done for us. Talking about how grateful we are to have our fathers. It was a bittersweet conversation, it was driven by the knowledge that so many of the children we love are growing up without knowing their fathers.

The first summer I was at Camp Peace one of my boys asked, “How many times have you seen your dad?” As if it was a typical getting-to-know-you type question.  I’ve seen my dad nearly every day of my life.

A little while before I moved to Victory the father of one of our ten year olds died. He was in Jamaica and I don’t think the boy actually knew him.

Yesterday Pipes was talking to another of our ten year old boys. She told him he was an amazing leader, and she told him that he surely knew himself, “I don’t know myself… I don’t know my father…”  His father passed away when he was four. They talked awhile about how God is our father, “I know that God’s my father.” he told her, “But it’s just different to have a physical father.

He’s right.

And we just can’t understand.

One day we listened to a song for a presentation.  That song told a very meaningful story: A women has a child only to have the father claim it isn’t his and leave. The child grows up and starts living the same type of life that his father had.

The father sees a young man on his turf and tells him to leave, the boy does not budge.

Instead he pulled out a newer thirty-eight snub
He clearly had the drop but the boy just paused (hold up)
There was somethin’ in this man’s face he knew he seen before
It’s like, lookin’ in the mirror seeing himself more mature
And he took it as a sign from the almighty Lord
You know what they say about he who hesitates in wa
r”

So the story ends with the father unknowingly killing his own son. Not something that’s likely to happen.

But there’s so much truth in it. One of the last lines is: “Be a father, you’re killing your sons.”

Later that same day Pipes handed me an ear bud to listen to the song “Best Day” by Taylor Swift. It’s a story as well. A story about how a dad who was there her whole life making every problem melt away, just with his presence. That’s a story I can relate to.

I couldn’t get over the contrast between the two songs.
I can’t get over the contrast between the way I grew up and the way they’re growing up.

We pray that when these boys grow up they’ll end the cycle.
They’ll be great and godly fathers who are present in their kid’s lives.

Only God can end cycles of sin and hurt and injustice.
So mostly we pray that these boys will find Him in a real and powerful way.

That He’ll teach them what a true and loving father is.

Happy Birthday Daddy. Thanks for being a godly father who's always there for us. I know you miss your dad today, I miss Papa too. But I'm thankful for the great dad he was, and for the way he raised you up as a man of integrity. I love you Dad, see you in a couple weeks.

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Hold My Heart

‘Cause I don’t want you to know where I am
’cause then you’ll see my heart
In the saddest state it’s ever been.

This is no place to try and live my life.
Relient K – Stop Right There

I tend to feel things really deeply. Possibly more deeply than most others.

In the past year and a half I’ve experienced God as my Comforter time and time again.

I heard this song on the radio and it just reminded me of all those times I felt so hopeless as I cried out to God. Looking back now I can see that He not only answered me every time, He was right there just… holding my heart.

Jeremiah 30:12 – ‘This is what the Lord says: Your wound is incurable your injury beyond curing…

Jeremiah 30:17 – … But I will restore you to health and heal your wounds,’ declares the Lord.

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