Friday, November 27, 2009

Seeing behind the "Seens"


Pondering aloud....

You know.... you've got wonder what all your prayers do? What it effects? What it changes? What it does - that human eyes don't know? What it moves - that was stilled until then? What happens that wouldn't have - if you hadn't? What doesn't happen - because you did?

Hmmm...... wonder if it's part of Heaven's tale that's told when we get there? Will it be part of our "Entertainment Tonight" for our viewing with pop-corn and coke and plenty of butter... with milk duds and hot tamales and all your favorite kinds of candies? Will it be a kind of "The rest of the story" (as Paul Harvey would dub it) to show us our prayer's trail (where all it went, who it touched, what it changed, what it kept from changing, all its affects) alway to its end? Will our eyes finally be opened to see what all went on "behind the scenes"............. or behind the "SEENS" as I've decided to call it? Wonder what all goes on 'behind' what we can see [behind our "seens" (or, our "unseen seens")] that is actually more real than what we can?

I've been praying for a girl, her boys, and her ex-husband for how many years now? Several! There are many "behind the seen" scenes that went un-seen that are too shameful and horrific to tell in their saga. I watched (as a guest in their audience) a lot of their scenes myself. Time won't let its moments be recaptured, but time also fades (and sometimes distorts) the memory to a different story from what actually happened even if I could find the words to contain exactly what happened. Of course, what good would it do? I don't know the full story of it anyway. Sum it up to say (without seeing all the scenes behind it), I prayed so hard for that girl and her boys and her marriage. I so asked, cried, begged, and pled with God to put back together again what man couldn't. "Humpty Dumpty sat on the wall," I'd pray. "Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. All the king's horses and all the king's men couldn't put Humpty together again....." but I knew God could! And so I prayed so hard asking Him to! It didn't seem to work. Divorce was threatened. Filed. Fought for. And finalized. It was ugly to the last drop! Mean! Mean! Mean! Vicious! And ferocious! Yet even the pen hitting the page to sign and to sever (what was once promised in a vow not to) didn't stop the ugly from its continual shredding. It's been how many years now? And it's still mean. Finished... but still not done. The fire still flames in an ever growing fury from the fuel of its hatred - that's wrought out in an ugly mean.


Even after all of that, STILL! I still KNOW the One that can! And for some crazy reason I'm still hoping Him to! The One Who can put back together again the shredded tears and tears (as in the 'tear' that rips, and the 'tear' that drips!) of mean. So still I ask Him to! God's gotta cup-full of the tears I've cried in all my asking for Him to help do it. Just recently I cried buckets about over it all over again.... telling Him to let us SEE His GLORY here (because He indeed would get the Glory if done), because no man can repair that mean that He Alone can mend.

Anyway.................................... The 'seens' haven't changed. (Nor the scenes either for that matter.) The 'seens' that we can see still look ugly and mean. But one thing is different that makes me wonder. It 'appears' to be an even uglier 'scene'. But when I saw it, I couldn't help but wonder if it's because we can't see "behind the seens" of it... and that maybe it's not as ugly as it seems? Maybe the "seen" carries an "unseen seen" with it? And ah, that's what I was hoping for anyway.

Here's what happened. See the stage. Watch the story. We're not in its final act. But perhaps Part 3? The scene ("seen") shows the girl in a hospital. Horribly sick. An exaggerated and nasty looking rash all over her face. Her feet and ankles are horrendously swollen. Her feet don't just look blue, but they've turned black! Her hands cover her bowed head that aches so horribly that her hands can't stop holding it. Her eyes stay closed, but squinted tight in efforts to stop it. And her breathing is so haggard and labored and loud that my mama (and hers) were scared that it'd stop. What I didn't know is that the doctors had told her more than a year ago that they thought she had Lupus, so she's avoided them like the plague. As if by her running away from them could make it not so. As if denial could fix it. As if refusal could refute it. As if disbelief could cause its disappearance. I understand that. It sounds like the very exact thing that I might would do. Running from reality, because you don't want to face it because you don't want it to be true.

Suffice it to say, the girl lies in a hospital bed as I write. They're doing tests. She's feeling better. I plan to go see her soon. But what my hope is........... that I have told God again and again and again, "Whatever...... Whatever, God! Whatever! You do whatever You can do to get their attention! You do whatever it takes to get it. PULL them, DRAW them, (YANK them if you must), but please do something to bring them back and put them back together again! Because even apart they're miserable! The hurt won't stop because they won't forgive. And both are still lost without the other."

Jesus' death brought Life! Sometimes so does ours. Not always a physical one (and I definitely hope NOT so in this case), but death of something none the less, to bring Life! For after all, sickness can be the very thing used to make one well.........................................

I don't know.

But, I do know my Hope! And I'll continue to pray. But because of my recent cried-out prayer and the hope that I still hold on to, and her mid-night's rush of last night's venture, I almost feel like that it's a wild route to my answer.. and that perhaps for just a snippet of a second that I got to peek in and to see behind the 'seens' to the unseen one..... and then, I got to see a glimpse of another 'seen' that's not happened yet (them getting back together again). Okay, so I'll admit it, I'm an optimist till the very end!... and sometimes even after then! :)

Thinking about it, I feel that I have also gotten to peek behind several other "seens" that still are not yet seen, as well. Perhaps one day I'll write a book for real? And title it: "Seeing Behind the SEENS!" .... A book that peeks behind the scenes ("seens") to tell the greater story." With stories that show the horrible things that often happen in life that are actually and in reality just being the package that answered prayers are brought to us in. Cause like I said earlier, death is often the very thing that brings life. Sickness is often the very tool used to make well. Blindness can often be used to make the person see. Prisons can be the place that God uses to set the captive free. The list goes on and on, ashes often brings beautiful.... in all kinds of creative ways.

Oh well, that's a ponder for another day. Meanwhile and until then my petitioning continues for God to SHOW HIS GLORY HUGE in their lives. And ours! I'll keep asking Him to join and to mend and to heal all that has such desperate need to be done to redeem and restore and right back again what's been left broken. I'll keep praying for both the "seens" and the "UNseens seens"..... and hope that when it's done that they (and we) can see as Peter and James and John did on the Mount of Transfiguration, "they could see no man, save Jesus Christ only" all over again!

And hey, never loose hope in your 'seens', because there are always 'unseen seens' waiting somewhere behind them. Your 'seen' might very well be the package that your hope is delivered and dressed in. For whoever would have thought that Jesus had to die to give us life? Things are not always as they're seen or like they seem............................... And the play is not over under the curtain comes down. But then again, that's really just when real "Life" gets started.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Drunk On Your Own W(h)ine!

One word can say a thousand different things. God “sends forth His Word"…” And it “comes.” The time even comes for the word spoken to be fulfilled (as it was sent to do). Scripture says, “He spoke… and it came to be;” “He commanded, and it stood firm.”   The Word cuts, it convicts, it sharpens, it enables, it’s alive, and it’s active.... To be quite honest, His Word just plain out does!!! It’s full of doing!!! He says "be" and it "be"s! And still today (as He did then) He sends forth His Word to do a thing, and His Word will not return to Him void. It will accomplish the thing that it was sent forth to do. It will achieve the purpose for which He sent it (Isaiah 55:22). My, those thoughts can be such an elaboration in themselves that their subject alone could be worked into a whole Blog all by themselves… But, today, that isn’t my intention. My today’s point is this, that He still speaks and I'm often blown away by what He says when it does.

He still speaks!

I so totally love how God’s Word speaks! It talks. It tells. It shows. It commands. It.... does! It's into doing!.... It works! It says what we need to hear. It convicts. It compels. It prompts. It empowers. It heals. It....____! It's endless!

Below you'll find the word spoken to me (from Eph 5:18), and then following their words, you will find how huge they spoke as they jumped off the page at me as I attempt to explain what I heard them saying on the day that I read them. The verse says,

"Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery.
Instead, be filled with the Spirit."
(Eph 5:18)

Today’s space will be used to comment on only the first half of the verse… though the second vies for its own exaggerated elaboration and attention on another day. Woe at its richness! Perhaps on the morrow? Maybe the day after that? Who knows (but God!), I’ll probably be on a whole new word by then. :)

"Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery.”

I love that! Now, may I beg your patience with me on the metaphor of what I heard when I read it? Forgive me in advance for taking liberty here and making a parallel, a modern day parable if you will. I know that I am taking this verse out of context ... but bare with me and come look to see how I saw these words when I read them because of something that I wrote earlier this year to a friend; and see if you can see the same thing that I did when finished. See if the way I saw it still speaks a convicting truth that stays and impacts a greater want to change in you, too, as it did me when I first heard it.

“Do not get drunk on wine.”

Drinking excessively to the point of drunkenness is obviously and blatantly said to be wrong. I suggest to you, though, that we can get "drunk" on more things than just wine. We can intoxicate ourselves and get “drunk” on a myriad of different things. And any drunkenness of any kind is wrong. Hang on a minute, and humor me until I get you to my point. First, here is a part of an email I wrote to a friend as we discussed the pity party that he found himself swimming in. At first it won't appear to have anything at all to do with our subject. Hang with me, though, and you'll see what I'm saying. It is what was used to propel my thinking to go in the direction it did. I wrote:

(Partial email to a friend) ".....I do understand. I can relate to what you're saying. Sometimes I find myself wallowing in my own pity party. Seldom do I allow myself to stay in it for very long though; for it makes me feel haggard and horrid, and I find that it's not worth its pain! We alone (each of us) decide how long we’ll stay there to swim. I wrote to a friend the other day ... here's what I said to her:

"I stopped for a cheeze-curl break (I never got lunch ... and I missed supper all together!) and I wondered how your day went??? I actually made myself stop long enough earlier to email Gena ... her daddy died 10 years ago on this very day, and life for her at the moment in the season where she finds herself is horrid. I thought about her a lot! Some thoughts laden with grief... hmmm, most thoughts really! Wonder what her thoughts were on a day like today as she remembered and mourned again the loss of her daddy? Wonder what her heart felt??? Wonder if she cried lots??? or cried a little??? or cried at all??? .... or cried a river inside without even once shedding a visualized tear? Wonder the gamut of where all her thoughts took her????? Wonder how many miles and years and minutes and tears she visited and cradled and nursed and pitied and swam and bathed in today? ... for one hurt (especially a massive hurt) has a tendency to go gather all of the other hurts and to have its own pain-filled pathetically pity-FULL party. It’s a time often spent getting drunk on its own "whine!"!!!!!! Haven't we all been guilty at times? Wonder where and how she spent her day? Wonder… who were the monsters that spooked from out of her closet in the midst of all of her grief?........"

I didn't realize what I was going to say until it was said. But once spoken and given its voice it spoke LOUD and made a huge impact inside me!!! More on me, I think, than on her! (Perhaps then ... that is who it was meant for?)

Here is the phrase that floored me so: "It’s a time often spent getting drunk on its own "whine!"!!!!!"

I'm not referring to a remembered day of sadness, that's understandable. Nothing wrong in that. It's the general thought of our whining over a thing to the extent of drunkedness that floored me. For how often do we really drink and sup from our complaining cup long enough that we become drunk on our whine? This time NOT drunk on "wine" ... but drunk off of our own complaining wail? For sometimes we whine over a thing.... and whine over a thing... and whine over a thing........ a LOT!... and we get so caught up in our complaint over the thing that we find it almost impossible to stop!
It reminded me of the Israelites and how God hated their murmuring and complaining ... after ALL that He had done! And it reminded me of a verse (though taken out of its real meaning ... it still can apply to reality) that says: "Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise." (Proverbs 20:1)

I know that it is speaking of actual wine that you drink ..... but think about it, don't you think that our "whine" is just as intoxicating and mind altering and damaging and destructive sometimes as the wine that we drink is? It, too, can be a “brawler,” and quickly lead us “astray.”

The NAS words it this way:

"Wine is a mocker,
strong drink a brawler,
And whoever is intoxicated by it is not wise."

The Message says:

"Wine makes you mean,
beer makes you quarrelsome
-- a staggering drunk is not much fun."

"A staggering drunk in not much fun!" No! It's not! And a whiner isn't either!

"Wine makes you mean!" And so sometimes does our "whine!" Have you ever been guilty? Has your whine made you mean? Do you ever become mean because of your whine?

"Beer makes you quarrelsome!"  Isn't a complainer quarrelsome, too? When we whine to the point that we become drunk in its stupor, we’re ferociously quarrelsome to everyone around us. Especially if they point out to us our uncontrolled state, we’ll act an idiot in our argument.

“Wine [whine?] is a mocker.”  The word "mocker" means: to scorn, to mock, to boast, to be inflated. Whiners scorn. Whiners mock. Whiners boasts. Whiners' egos are inflated!

Ephesians 2:1-5 tells us that we used to be "by nature objects of wrath." The definition of this  word wrath used in this verse can sound a lot like our w(h)ine that makes us mean, and the beer that makes us quarrelsome. It's defined as the fermented (shaking, discomposing, vibrating) juices inside that intoxicates to the point of fury that wants to stir up or arouse public feelings and that blows or shocks or upsets the equilibrium and disturbs the balance of things... destroying the composure and disturbing the order of things because of a loss of self-control through emotional stress. It disquiets, disturbs, perturbs, agitates, upsets, and flusters. How’s that for a  look at our w(h)ine in our wrath? And after such a definition we must have to wonder what the attraction is to either w(h)ine!

Let me give you an example here of what the whiner’s goal is to do. A w(h)iner is not happy shaking up in distress alone. Remember pity always wants a party so plans for one! I had someone call me just the other day, filled with a fury and she was spewing her spill. Whining! And might I add, enraged in her whine! She was in a total drunken stupor! Mean! Quarrelsome! Mocking! And very un-wise! The thing about it was, the more that she fumed, the hotter and madder she got, but I wasn’t falling for her ploy and falling into the pit of fury with her. She went on and on and fumed for at least 30 minutes. But, when she failed to ever reel me into falling into it with her, she threw a curve ball and came at me with another tactic… She turned it around so as to stab me in another place, because if that first one won’t work, they'll try another. So. Here's what she did. She said to me, “Well, let me tell you what she said about your son…….” Woe! Know what I mean? Her juices were agitated and furious, but she could not find happiness in her state alone, so she did whatever she could to invite me in… she was bound and determined that I was going to swim! The intoxicated state of the w(h)iner… wants company to w(h)ine with them! A w(h)iner wants you upset with him. A w(h)iner wants to shake you up with them. A w(h)iner wants to shake others in their agitated state so that they can become shaken and thus drunken with them!

Wine / strong drink / beer are all an intoxicating drink; “and whoever is intoxicated by it IS NOT wise.”!!!

"Intoxicating" is derived from two words...

the first being:
  • in
and the second:
  • POISON (!!!),
  • to excite or stupefy by alcohol or a drug especially to the point where physical and mental control is markedly diminished
  • It is an IN-testinal IN-toxication
  • IN-poison.
  • Poison IN ~ that once poisoned loves to spill OUT!!
Ouch! For what is more intoxicating, more poisonous, more stupefying ~ especially to the point where physical and mental control is markedly diminished ~ than our whine?????

A “brawler,” means:
  • to murmur,
  • to growl,
  • to roar,
  • to cry aloud,
  • to rage,
  • to make noise,
  • tumult,
  • be clamorous,
  • be disquieted,
  • to be loud,
  • be in an uproar,
  • be in a commotion,
  • to be boisterous,
  • be turbulent.
... It sounds a lot like our "whining," doesn't it? A brawler and a whiner seem to equal in their equation! Our whine murmurs, it growls, it roars, it cries aloud, it rages, it makes noise, it causes tumult, it’s clamorous, it’s loud, it causes an uproar, it causes commotion, it is boisterous, and turbulent!

Think about it! Could it not apply?????!!!!!!!! Could both wines (with the “h” or without it) fit the sentence and hold its own truth?

I said all of that to say, What is our problem? We're told not to complain. We're not to w(h)ine either! Nor be drunk in our w(h)ine! Thus, No "w(h)ining" allowed of any kind!!!

Next time we see that we’re beginning to whirl in our whine, stir in our stew, pity a party, moan our blues, whine about anything..... When our physical and mental control has been markedly diminished by some poison and we’re acting out from its stupor… - then let's get our eyes OFF of ourselves and refocus them on the One to Whom they should be on. Let’s q-u-i-t (or let’s q-u-i-e-t) our whining and begin to praise God instead and thank our Father for all that He's given!

Avoid all w(h)ine. Stop it the second you hear yourself getting started.... because just one sip often quickly leads to another, then another, then another…… and you find yourself drunk on your w(h)ine before you even felt the intoxication coming on you and taking you over! We're told to be “filled with the Spirit.” Let's leave all other w(h)ines alone!


Thank FULL.... so Giving Thanks!

Are you thank full? To say it another way,  Is your thank-tank full?

Full of thanks?.... and so having to say it!

Are you thank full for what you've got? Or, complain full of what you don't?

Hmmm..... tis the season to GIVE thanks!

"Be joyful always. Pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus" (1 Thes 5:16-18).

"Let the peace of God rule in your hearts... And be thankful [mindful of favors, grateful]. Let the word of Christ dwell in you... And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks [to be grateful, to feel thanks, give thanks] to God the Father through Him." Col 3:15-17; 4:2

Would you like to ask: What am I thank full for?
  • That my Father sent His Son... so I could be one!
  • That my Savior doesn't just save, but seeks to!
  • That my Redeemer is able and WILLING to redeem ANYTHING!
  • That my name is written in the Book of Life!
  • That a home is being prepared for me in Heaven.
  • That I can find comfort in knowing that God is in control even when I have none.
  • That the Creator of the whole Universe sees me!.... and LOVES me... and hears me when I cry!
  • That my Father knows what I need before I do (and even when I don't), but He still wants me to ask Him.
  • That as much as I want to hear His voice, He wants to hear mine!!!
  • For His Word!
  • For It's power!
  • For the One (Jesus) that became flesh and lived It out loud to show us how to!
  • For the Messiah that came.
  • For my Savior that died.
  • That God raised His Son alive again and that He also raised me!
  • For prayer.
  • For song.
  • For praise.
  • For wonder!
  • For awe!
  • For the thrill I find in my Lord!
  • For compassion.
  • For mercy.
  • For grace.
  • For forgiveness.
  • For His love that is unfailing and never fades!
  • For the with-ness of my God!
  • That my God remembers my sins no more.
  • For the clouds.
  • The sunrise.
  • A pretty sunset.
  • Rain.
  • Thunder.
  • Peace in a storm.
  • Conviction!
  • Godly sorrow.
  • A repentant heart.
  • My husband for loving me!
  • For 3 beautiful children!
  • My mom.
  • My dad.
  • My family.
  • My friends.... for old ones!... and my new!
  • When I see Jesus zipped in human skin!!!!!!
  • Love!
  • Joy!
  • Peace ~ the kind that surpasses all understanding!
  • A changed heart.
  • Silence!
  • When I hear God speak!
  • When His Word jumps off the page at me... blowing my mind and racing my heart with awe and wonder and a whoa-ed woe of the God Who not only spoke but still does!
  • Beauty.
  • Beauty from the ashes!
  • A ransomed, redeemed, and restored hurt.
  • Freedom!... and His Word that sets us free!
  • My home.
  • My bed!
  • Air-conditioning!
  • Food!
  • Beef jerky.
  • Pita chips :)
  • Mexican food!
  • Make-up!
  • Perfume.
  • Deoderant! :-/
  • Boots.
  • Bracelets! :)
  • Airports.... and all the chaos in them!
  • Airplanes.
  • Flying.
  • Windows in airplanes! Being able to look at the world from way up high... seeing little-bitty cars driving on winding roads, wondering who's in them, where they're going, and what they're thinking as they drive?
  • Flying through fluffy white clouds!
  • Mountains.
  • The ocean.... the beauty of the crashing waves, and it's sound!
  • Sand.... on the beach.
  • Kids!
  • Laughter!
  • Eyesight!
  • Hearing!
  • Legs that work!
  • Pain!
  • Moms.
  • Dads.
  • Conversation.
  • The smell of babies.
  • The softness of their skin.
  • Really old people.... and their beauty that they think has faded.
  • Smiles!
  • Dreams!
  • Nods of approval.
  • Encouragers!
  • Inspiration.
  • A hand-written card from someone.
  • Holidays at home!
  • Giving a gift and seeing someone open it.
  • Opening a gift someone gave me.
  • Doing something for someone without them knowing who did it.
  • Computers.
  • Blogs.
  • Email!
  • People!
  • New sheets!
  • Christmas decorations.
  • The Christmas cheer... the songs... the craziness.... the smell.... the weather.... jingle bells.
  • Hot apple cider.
  • Winter!
  • Sweaters.
  • Dogs.... especially mine.
  • Prissy's fashion!
  • Sabrina's paint!
  • Tabor's grin!
  • How SWEET those three are!
  • Tim's tenderness, his touch, his compassion, his patience with me. :)
  • Sisters!
  • Brothers!
  • Tears!
  • Hearts that must share.
  • Books.
  • Real life stories. Testimonies. Inspirations to want to live by.
  • Seeing someone's passion about something, their shared enthusiam.
  • Weddings.
  • The sweetness (even in the sad) at funerals.
  • The wind.
  • Deep conversations.
  • Memories.
  • The honesty of kids.
  • Acceptance.
  • Unconditional love.
  • Love that's unfailing.
  • Six news girls I've met in prison! Their hearts! Their sincerity! The Jesus in them... and their want to know more of their Lord!
  • Aww!  Nancy Blount.... who's no longer Nancy Blount, but now Nancy McCain, aka Nancy MacLeod... a lady who has blessed me MUCH!!!
  • Bridget! Julie! Jeannie! Paris! Wanda!
  • Buck! Tommy! Jennifer! Michelle! John! Jon! Mikayla!!! Alyssa!
  • The Adullam babies!
  • Teachers!
  • The lessons people have taught me!
No, I am NOT finished... There's so much more! There's so much to be thankful for! My list could go on for eternity. If all were listed there would be no end!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Yucky things that stick!


In the wee early hours this morning as I drove the distance between my office to home, of all the crazy and ridiculous things, I got super-glue stuck on my tongue. Here I had stopped by Krystals (at that hour there is nothing else opened) and grabbed me a couple of their squared-cut burgers (I wonder though if their meat qualifies as a burger... what kind of meat might you call that?). While digging through my purse for my wallet in need for my money, I broke a nail (the fake kind) while waiting in line. So, I did what any artificially-fingernailed-girl would do, I found my super-glue and glued it back on. Only the glue that I was using was jellied and sticky and gooey and it refused to dry for miles. Then, while eating my pickled and mustarded weird-shaped burger as I drove toward my home I unknowingly touched my finger to my mouth and got super-glue stuck to my tongue. How embarrassing! And how irritating is that! For though it didn't stick my tongue to the roof of my mouth or anything, it left a sanded-textured feeling inside; it was irritating (because I couldn't get it off) and aggravating (because it was so dumb), and it colored the taste of everything else that I ate. I had to laugh though after thinking about it... and I felt that God was shaking His head with a quirked smile at my ridiculousness and said with a nod and with eyes that twinkled, "Now Sharon, that'll teach. There's definitely a lesson in there."

For how often do we open our mouths and put something in it that sticks to our tongues as though super-glued? And we find it irritating and aggravating and it colors our tastes of everything else that we eat, without actually ever sticking our tongues to the roof of our mouths (though maybe surely it needs to!)? We get a morsel of some gossip, or someone has made us mad.... so we take the thing that we've just tasted and begin chewing and spewing and telling that thing that's become stuck to our tongues to everybody that we can find to tell in our paths. We've clamped our jaws tightly around it and so we shake it furiously to all that will let us and all that'll listen. That bit of bait has become as if super-glued to our tongues and it causes everything else that we're eating to taste funny as well.

There are lots of Scripture that we could use here about gossip and backbiting and slander and our words used in anger and mean; but to me Galatians 5:15 seems to sum it up well: "If you keep on backbiting and devouring each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other." We must stop biting back when we feel we've been biten! We must quit devouring each other and ourselves. When things seem to get sticky and gooey in my mouth with a tendency to want to get stuck to my tongue I've often prayed Psalm 141:3, "Set a guard over my mouth, O LORD; keep watch over the door of my lips." And I have literally asked God to do what He did to Ezekiel in Ezekiel 3:26, "I will make your tongue stick to the roof of your mouth so that you will be silent and unable to rebuke them, though they are rebellious..." And I've asked God to keep it sealed and stuck there still (as it tells in the following verse) until He's given me the words of His to say and until He renders it safe for me to again open it and begin speaking (His words and not mine).

Not a minute before! Not a second too early!

You know James (in chapter 3) has a quite a lot to say about the tongue and the great forest that is set on fire by its spark. He tells us that the tongue is able to "corrupt the whole person, (and) set the whole course of his life on fire." And he also says (1:26), "If anyone considers himself righteous and does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless." Ew, strong statement of truth that we often fail to give enough attention and consideration to.

Super-glue indeed... it's not made for the tongue. There might be something stuck on you, that's not made to be either. If everything seems to taste a bit funny in your world today, might you check to see if you've got something stuck to your tongue? You might want to do a sound-check... to see what your audience is hearing? And do a double-check round about you... to see if you've got quite a fire set burning? Check to see what you're eating... and if it doesn't steady well with you, spit the stuff out and quit spewing it out onto others.

So... how's your tongue? Got anything stuck to it there?

PhotobucketJust thinking more about that whole crazy tongue thing.. I feel that sometimes we look like the bullfrog that's croaking.... sitting there all puffed out, trying to catch what he can... as he lashes his tongue out for the bugs that he's aimed for to catch. Some people thrive on such drama. In certain seasons we're all more prone to find ourselves doing it. Do you know how silly that looks? Is that the look you're going for? Might it be the look you're currently dressed in? And just wondering.... are you happy dressed in that mean? Might we all note that tongue lashing doesn't bring either the lash-ee nor the lash-er much joy; but it's the lasher that God is displeased with!


Will you? Or, nah, will you not?

Many of us sing the song on Sundays. Maybe during the week, too, as we listen to our I-Pods or radios or favorite CDs. The song sings:

"This is the day that the LORD has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it."

But! It's not only a song. It comes from a psalm. Psalm 118:24 to be exact. And, I not only love those words; bless my husband's heart, but I say them and remind him of them often!

Particularly when his face is down-casted. When his brow is furrowed. When he looks dejected. When I can tell he's in a spirit of despair and feeling the weight of the world on his shoulders. When "hope" is hard to see in his "I-don't-know-what-to-do?" moment. Especially in monetary woes of oppression! It's in those particular moments that I'll say to him, "This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be what?" I'll ask.

He'll patiently retort the obvious answer, "and be glad in it."

To which I'll repeat it a couple more times, just in hopes that his feelings will eventually hear what his words are saying and perk to its command and obey them.

Hmmm.... This is the day, indeed, that the LORD has made... but do we rejoice?... and are we, in fact, really GLAD in it?

Rejoice ~ it's the Hebrew word giyl. It means to rejoice, to exult, to be glad, to delight; properly to go in a circle!.... to dance, to leap for joy!; to tremble, as accompanied by the leaping and palpitation of the heart.

After all the talk about dancing in an earlier blog, I have to say that this sure plays right along with it!

Be glad ~ the Hebrew word is samach. It's defined as to rejoice, to be glad, to gladden, to make glad, joyful, merry. The primary idea appears to be that of a joyful and cheerful countenance.  

I like that. I like that our joy, our gladness, the merry inside our souls, needs to be so deeply felt that the face can't help but to show it... and that our steps have need to act our delight with a dance.

Our faces are quick to show our moods of the moment, to divulge our woes, to reveal our feelings, to give way our excitement, to expose our hearts. Oh, we learn early on how to attempt to mask our feelings, to veil our hearts, to hide our hurts. We're very protective of our wounds. But should one dare to look closely, it can't help but be seen. If we're glad it shows. Mad also shows too. If we're hurt, if we're in pain, if we're worried, if we're sad, if we're suffering some anguish. And too, if we're super excited, in a good mood, happy, in-love, thrilled over something. All those things show. Our countenances are often quick to betray us. And so are our steps. Our walks talk and often tell how we feel. Whether it's rejection, acceptance, hope, or hopelessness. The list goes on. Start taking note of it. Watch people's face. Watch what their walks tell.

Now. Back to the verse that first prompted this post: "This is the day that the LORD has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it."

Will you really? Rejoice? Be glad? No matter your circumstances? No matter what happens? No matter the situations that surrounds you?  Be glad in the day that the Lord created and obviously had reason and purpose and plans in creating?

Ah, He's a God that can take and work everything out for good no matter its hurt and its first appearances.

"In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world!"..... Surely we can take heart in that and believe that He'll overcome whatever our day puts before us.

Reason enough, I conclude, in rejoicing and being glad in the day that He's given!


Saturday, November 21, 2009

The Cutest Thing on the Road

I am reposting an old post from several years ago that I had blogged on another website of mine. Regardless of it's age, it is one that impacted me forcifully enough then that it still stays on my mind, thus still affecting my thoughts... AND my walk (wow, now that's big!). Today, I thought I'd dig it up and repost it again here. I hope it smacks a punch to you and says something huge to you as well as it did to me when it first spoke.

The Cutest Thing on the Road

The police officer told her, "I have to say, you did good."

Her mouth dropped open in total confusion as she quickly looked up at him in her wonder. While blackened tears from non-waterproofed mascara streaked down her face she asked him, "Sir?"

And he said, "Well, if you're going to do it, you might as well do it big. In all the years I’ve worked as a police officer, I have never seen a wreck like this one. I’ve never seen a Bug hit another car so hard that it sent the vehicle it ran into plowing under the car in front of it leaving its two back wheels spinning in total suspension." Then he looked at her and gave a crooked nod as he said it again, "You did a good job."

It was almost dark and raining. We had both left the school at the same time - following each other. She was behind me. But when I moved over to the left lane she passed me. She was anxious to get home, her boyfriend was coming over. I lost her in the traffic. Yet just a mile up the road from where I'd last seen her, I found her waiting on me. Crying in the rain… with a banged up vehicle. Looking horrified and pitiful. Both her and her Bug. The airbags had ejected. Steam was rising in a major smoke from her Bug’s engine. Tears streamed down her face. A black car smashed (from both behind and in front) was sitting in front of hers. And a white car jacked up on top of the black one was in the air with its hind-wheels still rolling.

No one was hurt. But it did some major damage to some vehicles! I am so thrilled with the God Who takes care of our babies.... Because if it weren't for Him........................ (I don’t even want to think about it!)

That was yesterday.

Here's my today....

I babysat and spent most of my day on the phone talking between this person and that about Prissy's accident or about transportation of some sort. It's been overly ridiculous. Mostly a good day though.... but a constant one.

Tonight as I type my face is furrowed from a frown... distressing and sad........ I'm lamenting and grieving, mourning over a Pink piece of metal even while I am so very thankful that my daughter was spared (as well as the other drivers!) and after I have just posted a blog today that talks about our dancing and our not living in our wail. After all, Prissy's not left paralyzed from the neck down, nor with the rare dreaded locked-in syndrome disease that leaves you only left blinking (that’s a whole other story!). So, though I'm sad, I feel awfully guilty for being so... because I am really, really, really thankful too! Yet still my heart hurts about it. They called this afternoon to tell us that our squished bug was totaled.

"I don't want 'em to total it!"

I bet I've said that a thousand times since I heard that they were. Since then, a furrowed brow has stayed on my face, because I really don't want them to total it! It was so blooming cute. I mean, had someone even bothered to take an aerial shot last night as proof of our collision in the rain in the midst of all the night's traffic... even with her eyes knocked out and her looking so doleful and dismal, she was the cutest thing on the road. There she was standing out like a sore thumb dressed in her Pepto-Bismol pink with PRISSSY splashed across the tag on her tail with a smashed in face and getting drenched in the rain and yet she still looked pretty. Ditzy maybe? Or as if her eyes were spinning from the blow? Maybe dis-spirited is the word I am looking for? Disheartened, and with the wind completely knocked out of her. But still, she sat there looking so innocent and girly and so preciously sweet. Looking rather sad from the blow of her moment, but still fun. When the police officer got there and as he was getting out of his car even he couldn't help but smile as he walked up to her wanting to know who PRISSSY was.


Awww, I don't want 'em to total it!

But it's just a car. Metal and money. Nothing that'll matter in the end. Not something we'll take with us when we go, or even want to. We won't even long for it or miss it. Never give it a second thought even.

How easy it is for us to mourn our stuff. Sometimes we'll mourn more about our stuff than for people. We'll mourn more over our wrecked cars than the wrecked lives living right in front of us with smashed in faces, eyes bulging out, steam rising from their engines - from the wrecks they've made of their lives. "It's their fault," we'll think, "so why should we care?" “They’ve made their own bed, now let ‘em lie in it.” “They should have thought of the consequences before they decided to do that.” “They should have known better!” “They could have made better choices!”

Last night it was Prissy's fault too, but she really didn't mean to. It wasn't her purpose. It wasn't her plan. It wasn’t something she set out to do. She just wanted to hurry home to get to someone that she thinks 'loves' her. Never thinking that going too fast on a rainy night on a slippery road with lots of traffic might change her plans and could have hurt someone else on her way or killed herself in the process. It was her fault, but how can you blame her?

We often get mad and frustrated and impatient with those that have made such a mess of their lives. They shouldn’t have done the thing that they've done! And just look at how many other people they've hurt along their journey! Not caring what their recklessness might do to the ones closest to them in their paths. In their hurry to somewhere to find 'love' or acceptance or to find filling to fulfill an empty feeling, they'll drive too fast, on rainy nights, on slippery roads, with lots of traffic...... and they'll wreck their lives which leaves their faces smashed in, their eyes red-eyed and bulging, steaming rising from the heat in their engines, eyes spinning from the blow, dis-spirited... disheartened.... and we won't see innocent and girly and preciously sweet hidden beneath their wreck. Instead, the wreck of their lives that wrecked into ours leaves the heat in our own engines rising, our own eyes red-eyed and bulging, our own faces screwed in a furious mean at what they've done and the pain that they've caused us. And we won't see our own wrecked selves from scowling at their wreck. And then, how dare they come and park their wrecked thing in front of our house after they’ve made such a mess of it!

It makes for a vicious cycle.

Who's wrecked in front of you, or wrecked into your world? Who's the guy or the girl in your life whose life looks totally wrecked and messed up to you? If someone had bothered to take an aerial picture as proof of their collision in the dark of their night in the midst of all of that traffic - what would you see in its picture? Will you see innocent and girly and preciously sweet hidden somewhere way beneath their wreck? Or more importantly yet, if God had taken an aerial picture of the "wrecked," what would He see? And do we look and see the same picture that He does?

Prissy was appalled and her feelings were tremendously hurt that her brakes seem to fail her when she slammed them after she realized that she was about to wreck and had to stop; but instead it sent her wheels skidding on the slippery road right into its target because she'd attempted to stop too late and the tires failed to ever gain traction. It's that way with sin too, once we waken to the horror of where our ‘wheels’ (wills!) are headed. It's oft times too late when we slam on our brakes, because we've been traveling too fast, for far too many nights, on slippery roads with too much traffic. And we slide right into it! We wreck! Wounding ourselves and many others around us.

Remember the story of the Good Samaritan? (Luke10:25-37) What do you do with the man that you pass by on the side of the road that's been robbed and beaten and left for dead? Do you bother to stop and help him? Or do you pass by the wreck that they’ve made of themselves… because after all, they caused it!? In all honesty, it truly is their fault! It is the obvious consequences of their choices! They were warned. They knew better. But need we be reminded of the fact that Jesus died for us - not after we'd cleaned up our wrecks - but while we were still living as sinners (Romans5:8).

The insurance company called me just a few minutes ago. I asked the girl about it. She said that normally they total a car when the damage is 75% of the car's worth. Prissy's was a $1,000 over a 100%. Well still..................................

I asked her what they would do with it. She told me that they would take it to a salvage yard to park it. Where someone would buy it and if they think that might be able to make some money off of it, they'll work on it to fix it up. If not, they'll strip it for parts and crush the rest.

That sounds HORRID, doesn't it? I hate the idea even of it having to sit in a junk yard among the damaged and wrecked and unloved and unwanted..... And then to think of them striping… then crushing her! It just sounds so ungrateful and ugly and mean! As silly as it sounds, I feel so guilty about it!

WOE though, when we leave the ‘wrecked’ (the robbed and beaten and left for dead) and walk on by… deeming them not ‘worth it’ to us. ‘Totaling’ them with our actions! The enemy uses the wrecked! If there is still anything that he thinks salvable, he’ll use their ‘vehicles’ to make ‘money’ for him! Or, if too broken, too wrecked, too damaged, too unwanted and too unloved; he leaves them ‘parked’ in some junk yard (possibly some prison), until he’s stripped them completely. Then, he’ll simply (and gladly) crush the rest!

What will you do? Will you just write the wrecked off as 'Totaled' too, because in your estimation it will cost more to fix him/her than he/she's really worth it to you? Too much time! Too much effort! Too much heart-ache! Too hard! Too aggravating! Too much work! Too much money! Might you hear God repeating the same words to you about that wrecked one's life that I've been repeating about a pink metal bug, "Aw, don't total her! I don't want 'em to total her! She’s worth it to Me!" (1John3:16).

That wrecked person you know was worth it to Him, but do you count her worth it to you? Or, do you not even see her? Had you rather leave her thrown into the junk yard where she’ll be stripped for parts and then crushed with what’s left? Do you get more upset over the worthless? the metal? the money? the stuff? or how much it’ll cost to fix them instead, and decide the cost is more than you’re willing to spend? After all, just as the enemy uses the enemy for bad; God uses the ‘wrecked’ too… after He’s invested His life in order to save them… ransom, redeem, restore and renew them… only God doesn’t use them for bad, God makes new and uses them only for good!

Passed any wrecks along your way in your world lately? What's the "cutest thing" to you "on your road”?

© Sharon Lee - February 2, 2007

I Hope You Dance!

"And David danced before the LORD with all of his might..."
~ 2 Sam. 6:14 ~

“And David danced…”

David danced! I love that! David danced!

Do you?

It's intriguing to me that David danced. And now I wonder if you do? If I do? If you have? If you could? If you would? If you should? “David danced before the LORD with all of his might.” Could the same thing be said of you? If your name and if your story were penned and placed in Scripture, inspired by God and engraved on His pages, exposed for the world to read, would one verse hold words to say of you - that you "danced before the LORD with all of (your) might"? Have you ever danced before Him? Has God seen your dance?

"Danced" - is actually the Hebrew word karar. This particular word for dance is used only twice in Holy Writ, both defining David's dance before his LORD. It seems more special somehow when only ‘one’ is worded as wearing it. David danced. Danced / karar means: to whirl, to dance, a whirling, dancing. Whirling and twirling..... before and toward and to and for his God alone! David danced! It was:
  • An internal feeling - externalizing itself!
  • A feeling so huge INside - that it moved the out!
  • A sensation so vast - that the OUTside had to give demonstration of the IN!
  • An overflow of the heart - that was so filled that it flowed over into movement and moved the whole body that it was carried in.
Thus, David danced for his LORD! His in-ternal feeling had no choice other than to exposed itself out! It had to! I could no longer keep itself bottled silently and stayed still!

David gave dance to the songs that he sung.

David danced.

It’s as if his song, as if his verbalized words put with melody, needed step! As if his feelings INside needed to show OUTside how he felt! As if his vibrating feeling from within vibrated the whole vessel that carried it. So he danced to the tune that his heart did sing!

In the psalms David wrote words to pen his feelings to the LORD, and in one specific psalm he wrote:

"You turned my wailing into dancing;
You removed my sackcloth
and clothed me with joy,
that my heart may sing to You
and not be silent.
O LORD my God,
I will give You thanks forever."
~ Ps. 30:11-12 ~

So indeed, his heart did sing... and his legs moved to dance the feeling it felt!

Perhaps you've had cause for "wailing" as David did? And you've wailed! Go on, then, do! Wail on! Wail as long as you need to. If you've had reason or have reason to now for wailing, then wail! Wail out loud and lament with all your might! Wail on! God knows your heart, sees your hurt, and can handle your loudest wail. WAIL! If your heart needs wailing, then yell your WAIL… or wail your yell, whichever best suits you!

This word "wailing" is from a Hebrew root word (caphad) that means "to beat the breast, as a sign of grief; especially for the dead..... It is sometimes so used as to be applied to the voice of the mourners."

With that said, I’ve taken it upon myself to define it this way:
  • A wail – is a voice of the mourner!
  • A wail – puts sound to the hurt.
  • A wail – is an utterance of the grief.
  • A wail – is a vocalized weep.
  • A wail – is an outward expression in verbal form of the grief of the heart in mourning for the death of a thing!

Have you had something to die? And you grieve its death? Are you caught in the horror of its hurt?

What died?

A dream?







A friend?

A marriage?

Something you wanted?

A desire?

A need?

A job?

Some freedom?

A ____ ? (What was (is) it for you?)

What died? What pain caused such hurt to the heart that your hands balled themselves into clinched fists and raised themselves to beat its ache? What caused your sounds to pass what’s called a cry and grew into a wailing? Are you wailing now?... And, if so, how long has it been since you have been wailing? Have you grown comfortable to its sound and in your cover of sackcloth that came with its cry?

“You turned my wailing into dancing…… You removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy…”


Sackcloth is “saq” in the Hebrew. And ‘saq’ is defined as: “sackcloth, sack, sacking, worn in mourning or humiliation. The word saq when used as “sack” (as in a “bag”) is a flexible container that may be closed for holding, storing, or carrying something in.”

Everything has its season. But woe, did you “sack” your sorrow in the bag ("the “flexible container”) of your own body; and now, do you still hold and store and carry your wailing after it is way past its season of carrying? Does the stench of it reek to all who near you? Truly, I won’t argue the fact of your cause to wail, we've all been given times to. BUT, have you kept yours sacked and stored and bagged within you, and are you still holding on to it and still carrying it way past its season?

“There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:
a time to be born and a time to die,
… a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance.”
~ Ecc. 3:1,2,4 ~

What “time” do you find yourself in?

And are you living in a season that’s past its “time”? Have you never gone past your mourning to get to your dance? Have you stayed yourself in your “weeping” and never journeyed further to find your “laughter”? Have you (in your sacked horror) “died” before your “time” while you've still been left here breathing?

No matter the what that brought your wail, God can “turn” your wailing into dancing! He can remove your sackcloth, pull you out of its “bag,” and clothe you with a “joy” that not only sings its song but must dance! It won't be able to help it! It'll have to! Yet the question is: Will we let Him? Or will we (waaaay past it’s “time”) wallow forever in our wail?

That “joy” that God will clothe us in (if we let Him) means: joy, gladness, gaiety, pleasure. Do you want to have joy? Do you wish to be glad? Do you dance with gaiety? Do you know what it’s like to dance in His pleasure? What are you presently wearing: sackcloth? or gladness? Do you mourn? Or do you dance? What season are you in? And are you living in your season? Or, are you living in yesterday’s season? Or maybe even last year’s? Or... are you still in your yesteryear’s wail?

My heart has fallen for a guy that I was introduced to through my sister via the Internet. He doesn’t know me, but I admire him from afar. I’ve prayed for him, grieved for him, felt for him, loved him, laughed with him, mourned with him, danced with him, celebrated with him, been inspired by him, spent lots of time reading his Blogs, and I’ve spent a tremendous amount of time just thinking about him. I’ve talked about him to so many people: my husband, my children, my friends, their friend’s friends, my Bible class students, myself, GOD(!)…… he stays on my heart and in my mind, I so totally truly LIKE this guy! His name is Kenny. He is 28 years old and he's beautiful! He’s a gorgeously handsome guy! I've known him (without him knowing me) for 4 years now. February 11th was the 5th year anniversary of a skiing accident that he had in 2004. He went on a skiing adventure for fun, and came back from it changed forever. He returned forever frozen since then in total paralysis from his neck down.

Why do I like him? And why does he inspire me so? This is my reason: he cannot walk, he can’t move unless someone moves him, he has to be carried whenever he’s moved, he can’t feel (yet still feels – inside, not out)… his whole world fell to its horror when he did on that day…… yet he still dances his dance with the only “legs” that’s been left him,… he writes. Writes, not whines mind you, but writes with such a humor that you can’t help but love and admire him! He dances with what he’s got. He dances with his words and his song is still sung!!!! He is one of the most gorgeous guys I’ve ever seen, He was full of life and lived it to its full…… and yet when the steps he used to take was taken from him…… never did he loose his song!!!! Weeping came for a night, but he chose joy’s laughter in the morning! He’s not living in yesterday’s season! If you won’t dance for yourself, then could you choose to dance for Kenny? He would love to have what you have!.... yet he doesn’t wallow in his wail that he does not.

"..David danced before the LORD with all of his might..." … David danced before God with all of the strength he had in him. Kenny dances “with all of his might.” What “might” you have, and do you dance with the might you've been given?

I’ll end with the words of LeeAnn Wommack’s song, sung by her voice and words penned on her album, but for today penned from my hand and my heart to yours! For, with all of my heart I hope you dance and I sincerely hope that whenever you see me that you'll see me dancing too!

I Hope You Dance

I hope you never lose your sense of wonder,
You get your fill to eat but always keep that hunger,
May you never take one single breath for granted,
God forbid love ever leave you empty handed,

I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean,
Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens,
Promise me that you’ll give faith a fighting chance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.

I hope you dance.... I hope you dance.

I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance,
Never settle for the path of least resistance
Livin’ might mean takin’ chances but they’re worth takin’,
Lovin’ might be a mistake but it’s worth makin’,

Don’t let some hell bent heart leave you bitter,
When you come close to sellin’ out reconsider,
Give the heavens above more than just a passing glance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.

I hope you dance....i hope you dance.
I hope you dance....i hope you dance.

(time is a wheel in constant motion always rolling us along,
Tell me who wants to look back on their years and wonder where those years have gone.)

I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean,
Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens,
Promise me that you’ll give faith a fighting chance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.

Dance....i hope you dance.
I hope you dance....i hope you dance.
I hope you dance....i hope you dance..

(time is a wheel in constant motion always rolling us along
Tell me who wants to look back on their years and wonder where those years have gone.)

Friday, November 20, 2009

We serve a God with Un-Quit-able Love!

I shared a verse here in yesterday's post that I found in my yesterday's immediate-need-of-the-moment. I knew it in the NIV, but was encouraged further by seeing it afresh in The Message's wording. It’s found in Psalm 136:23-26, and it says, "God remembered us when we were down, His love never quits. Rescued us from the trampling boot, His love never quits. Takes care of everyone in time of need. His love never quits. Thank God, who did it all! His love never quits!"

Taking that verse that God used in energizing me in my moment of despair, I went back to it again today to reread it again and then to read the whole chapter. First in The Message, then the NIV, then the KVJ..... and once started, who could stop there? I could NOT help myself, an elaboration HAD TO BE made. I did what any sensible-awed-with-wonder person would do, I pulled out my defining equipment and here's where I went with it.

Psalm 136:
Thank God!
He deserves your thanks.
His love never quits.

Thank the God of all gods,
His love never quits.

Thank the Lord of all lords,
His love never quits.

Thank the miracle-working God,
His love never quits.

The God whose skill formed the cosmos,
His love never quits.

The God who laid out earth on ocean foundations,
His love never quits.

The God who filled the skies with light,
His love never quits.

The sun to watch over the day,
His love never quits.

Moon and stars as guardians of the night,
His love never quits.

The God who struck down the Egyptian firstborn,
His love never quits.

And rescued Israel from Egypt's oppression,
His love never quits.

Split the Red Sea right in half,
His love never quits.

Led Israel right through the middle,
His love never quits.

Dumped Pharaoh and his army in the sea,
His love never quits.

The God who marched His people through the desert,
His love never quits.

Smashed huge kingdoms right and left,
His love never quits.

Struck down the famous kings,
His love never quits.

Struck Sihon the Amorite king,
His love never quits.

Struck Og the Bashanite king,
His love never quits.

Then distributed their land as booty,
His love never quits.

Handed the land over to Israel,
His love never quits.

God remembered us when we were down,
His love never quits.

Rescued us from the trampling boots,
His love never quits.

Takes care of everyone in time of need,
His love never quits.

Thank God who did it all!
His love never quits!

Now in the KJV  :)
Oh give thanks
[thank, laud, praise, confess, cast out, throw]
unto the LORD;
for He is good: for
His mercy
[His checed - His goodness, His kindness, His lovingkindness, His faithfulness]
endureth forever
[owlam – for ever, always, continuous existence, perpetual, everlasting, indefinitely, unendingly, eternally].

O give thanks to the Lord of lords:
for His mercy endureth forever.

To Him who alone doeth [works, makes, fashions, accomplishes, produces, prepares, puts in order, ordains, orders, brings about] great [large, loud, great, distinguished, powerful, mighty] wonders [marvels, to be wonderful, to be surpassing, to be extraordinary, to be beyond one’s power, to be difficult to do, to be difficult to understand, to do extraordinary or hard or difficult things, to do wondrously, to show oneself wonderful or marvelous]:
for His mercy endureth forever.

To Him that by wisdom made the heavens:
for His mercy endureth forever.

To Him that stretched out the earth above the waters:
for His mercy endureth forever.

To Him that made great lights:
for His mercy endureth forever.

The sun to rule by day:
for His mercy endureth forever.

The moon and stars to rule by night:
for His mercy endureth forever.

To Him that smote Egypt in their firstborn:
for His mercy endureth forever.

And brought out [to bring out, to lead out, delivered out] Israel from among [from within them, from the middle of them, from in them] them:
for His mercy endureth forever.

With a strong [strong, stout, mighty, firm] hand, and with a stretched out [extended, held out, stretched forth] arm:
for His mercy endureth forever.To Him which divided the Red sea into parts:

for His mercy endureth forever.

And made Israel to pass through the midst of it:
for His mercy endureth forever.

But overthrew [to shake off, to overthrow] Pharaoh [“a great house”] and his host [his strength, his might, his army, his power] in the Red sea:
for His mercy endureth forever.

To Him which led [walked with, proceeded with, moved with, went with; to lead, to bring, to CARRY, to cause to walk] His people through the wilderness:
for His mercy endureth forever.

To Him which smote [killed, beat, slay] great [larger, loud, great, powerful, mighty, important] kings:
for His mercy endureth forever.

And slew [to kill, slay, murder, destroy] famous [great, majestic, nobles, famous] kings:
for His mercy endureth forever.

Sihon [“warrior”, “sweeping away”, i.e. a leader carrying everything before him] king of the Amorites [“a sayer”… from amar – to say, speak, utter, to say in one’s heart, to think, to command, to promise, to intend, to tell, to call / i.e. “Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made, He said to the woman, “Did God really say?”]:
for His mercy endureth forever.

And Og [“long-necked”, “gigantic”, a king in Bashan celebrated for his great size] the king of Bashan [“fruitful”]:
for His mercy endureth forever.

And gave their land for an heritage:
for His mercy endureth forever.

Even an heritage unto Israel His servant:
for His mercy endureth forever.

Who remembered us in our low estate [lowliness, low estate, low condition, wretched condition;… sink, humbled, humiliated]:
for His mercy endureth forever.

And hath redeemed [tore us apart, tore us away, broke us away, snatched us away, rescued us, redeemed us, delivered us] us from our enemies [our adversary, our trouble, our distress, our affliction, our foes, our sorrow, our oppressor, our narrow place, where we are bound, where we are tied up, where we are shut up, where we’re besieged, hard pressed, suffering distress, vexed, harassed]:
for His mercy endureth forever.

Who giveth food to all flesh:
for His mercy endureth forever.

O give thanks unto God of heaven:
for His mercy endureth forever.

What can I say? He is a GOoD God! He does deliver! He does save! His love lasts forever! There’s nothing we can do to separate ourselves from it. We can never get away from His love. For His love never quits. No matter what we do. No matter what we’ve done.

How can I say that? How can I believe that? What about when there is still sickness and sorrow? Still harm and hurt? Still pain and prisons? What about then? How can we still say this then? How can we believe still in our God when He doesn’t rescue us completely from the horror of some pits? when we’re still locked in some prisons?

I don’t know all the answers. But this I’m convinced of. It doesn’t matter who asks Him to, if anyone will believe in Him and His Son that came to save, He will give them eternal life. Life without pain or sin or sorrow or suffering in the next one. He’s warned us that we’ll still have troubles here. It’s a fallen world, where we’re not freed from evil. But we can miraculously be freed and live the promised abundant life no matter our surroundings or circumstances.