In John 10:10 Jesus promises His followers abundant life. This blog is about my life as His follower.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Encouragement

Encouragement can come from the most unexpected of sources!

Tonight I was encouraged from the words that came from my youngest son.

I'd had an encounter with my middle son that didn't go so well during and directly following our dinner together. I was so beyond tired from an exceedingly difficult day at work and a poor night's sleep last night. While I was at the sink doing the dinner dishes my youngest son suddenly said aloud "Isaiah 40:30-31". This caused me to remember the favorite passaged:

30
Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;

31 but those who hope in the LORD
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.

Isaiah 40:30-31 (NIV)

Those wonderful words from my son caused me to speak the truth aloud. To remind myself that as I wait on Him, GOD WILL renew my strength. That I've been tired lately because I'm looking to myself for strength and I just don't have enough to do and be who I want to without His supernatural strength.

Then my son says that 2 Thessalonians 3:3 is a neat verse too and I tell him that I don't know that one so he reads to me (from the NIV):

3 But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.

Isn't God good to bless me with such a wonderful son and His word?!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Captivated

I've long been captivated by journals of Christians who lived before me.

Today I read a devotion entitled "The Embrace". It was more like a personal journal excerpt, by someone who's apparently well known in some circles but new to me; Hugh of St. Victor.

He totally caught me with that first line:

"What is that sweet thing that comes sometimes to touch me at the thought of God?"

He goes on to speak from two vantages, that of the soul and that of the man. He's having that inward conversation with himself in which we all engage. In the soul he's reflecting on the experience of encountering God. He speaks with such winsome passion:

"I lose memory of my former trials, my soul rejoices, my mind becomes clearer, my heart is enflamed, my desires are satisfied. I feel myself transported into a new place, I know not where, I grasp something interiorly as with the embraces of love."

He goes on to speak of how he engages to:

"struggle deliciously to prevent myself leaving this thing which I desire to embrace forever"

He arrives at that point where I so long to live my life from, where he can sincerely say:

"I had at last found the goal of all my desires. I seek for nothing more. I wish for nothing more."

He describes this experience of complete satisfaction within his soul, encountering his God. But from the man vantage he explains how God allows us just bits of His presence, so wonderful that we are overwhelmed. Those experiences which allow us, as followers of God, to:

"in the times of His absence thou shalt console thyself; and during His visits thou shalt renew thy courage which is ever in need of heartening."

I so often hear Christians today speak about needing those times of prayer and meditation, those quiet times, to enable us to live our lives as God wants. I hear this so often that sometimes it becomes meaningless to me.

But I love the peek into Hugh of St. Victor's quiet time; a look into how rapturous it can be, and what that rapture can reap in my life.

What are some of the things that you have read, or are currently reading, that help you rekindle your excitement about taking away time to be alone with God?

Friday, June 20, 2008

McCain disappointment

OK, I don't like Obama. This pretty much leaves me with McCain.

While there are things that I do appreciate about McCain, I was disappointed to learn last night that McCain refused to speak before the Southern Baptist convention. Outside of Catholics, Southern Baptists are the single largest Christian religious group in the United States. So why wouldn't McCain talk before them?
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