That small, quiet voice

Speak, Lord, Karen May, Amayzing Graces

Another of my favorite readings is the one of Elijah waiting in a cave for the Lord to pass by. He’s fleeing from a pretty bad situation, and a queen who is determined to have him killed. It has gotten a little crazy in Elijah’s life, and he’s running.

God, however, has other plans, and Elijah needs to go out of the cave and listen.

A strong and heavy wind was rending the mountains and crushing rocks before the Lord–but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake–but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake there was fire–but the Lord was not in the fire. After the fire there was a tiny whispering sound. When he heard this, Elijah hid his face in his cloak and went and stood at the entrance of the cave. (1Kings 19:11a-13a)

How often do we look for God in the big moments, or the grand events, or even the overwhelming experiences? In reality, most of the time those things are distracting us Continue reading

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Stepping Out

I’ve always loved Peter, and especially the story of his walking on the water to Jesus. His confidence to step out of the boat is impressive, and his sinking into the water as he realizes what he is doing is so typical of many of us.

As we listened to the story this weekend, I noticed something that I hadn’t ever heard before.

Jesus comes walking across the water during the night. Naturally, everyone in the boat is a bit scared. This doesn’t really happen too often, so they have no idea what is coming towards them. Peter calls out and puts Jesus to the test, saying, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.”

Except the test really puts Peter on the line.

I think I might have asked for a different sign. Continue reading

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Music Monday: Drops in the Ocean by Hawk Nelson

“I want you as you are, not as you ought to be.”

There are days that I just don’t measure up. There are days when I lose my temper, fall into doubt and fear, lose my way, or just simply fail. We all have them – the days we feel “less than.”

It’s hard in those times to come joyfully to worship or prayer. Those are the days you come humbly saying, “I have very little to offer.” And Jesus responds, Continue reading

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Fired Up

Be who you were meant to be, St. Catherine Sienna, Karen May, Amayzing Graces

I have four children. Two of them are very extroverted, loud, and energetic. The other two are quieter, thoughtful, and introverted. There have been times with all of them that we have discussed how the things that make their siblings wonderful are not actually the things that make them wonderful. It’s funny how the same actions and behaviors fit so well on one person and are simply jarring on another.

It’s the same for any of us trying to make a difference in our worlds. We look to those who have been successful, and those who have made an impact. We look at what they have done and the methods they employed and try to employ them ourselves.

Of course, it is good to have role models Continue reading

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Magic-God or Real-God?

I am always sharing stories with my family about miracles that God is working in the lives of people that I know. Healings, opportunities being presented, relationships restored, and lives being saved.

It makes me wonder sometimes if I am creating a magician God for them. He is wondrous and powerful, yet there are many times when it feels like He just doesn’t show up. There are many times that the healing doesn’t come and the suffering just has to be endured. What do we do then?

It’s then that we take those moments of miracle and remember that God is never far away. It is so easy to cover the blessings with the fear or sorrow in the suffering. It’s so easy to put God off for later while we deal with the crisis at hand.

But it is in precisely those moments that we need to remember Continue reading

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Music Monday: Angel Eyes

When my daughter comes home from college, one of the first things she does is sit down at our piano and play Jim Brickman’s Angel Eyes. It’s a beautiful song that just brings me joy and peace when I hear the notes floating through our home.

Music can lift our spirits, calm our souls, energize us, and bring us to tears. Today’s Music Monday doesn’t have any inspirational words or phrases, and doesn’t have the best music video. It’s just some simple piano and a title that reminds us of the beauty of the angels that surround us every day.

Listen, and rest on the wings of your angels. Let them help you find the beauty in your day and see the graces pouring over you right now.

 

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Because God is Real

My daughter had a friend growing up that we knew for years. We didn’t spend much time with the family, but we would see them in church, the girls would get together occasionally, and we would see them at school events.
 
And we never saw the father. Ever.
 
There was much good-natured discussion and speculation in our family. We were pretty sure he was there, but had no idea where. It could be that he was actually there, but we didn’t know what he looked like. It could be that he really was a story that they made up. It could be that he was a spy and couldn’t let anyone know he existed. Of course, we didn’t ask the friend. That would spoil the fun of the hunt.

Continue reading

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Seen in Scranton, PA

Greater love hath no man than to lay down his life for a friend, anonymous, Amayzing Graces, Karen May

 

Okay, I know it can be hard to locate the source of a common quote, but this one has got to take the cake. I saw this on a wall of inspirational quotes around the courthouse in downtown Scranton, PA. There were quotes from Patton, Thomas Paine, Nimitz, and this anonymous person with a great quote about great love. It sounded really familiar to me.

Anyone recognize it? 100 points to everyone who knows who said it, and a bonus 100 if you can give me the verse.

 

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Music Monday: Who Am I?

I was reading the book of Job today. Now, that’s not usually the place to go for a “pick-me-up,” but I found something really awe-inspiring in it that I think really relates to this song. It was one of those moments when I just sat down and opened my Bible, asking God to speak to my heart.

Then I opened to Job. A little intimidating, don’t you think? Continue reading

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Late fees?

My grace is sufficient for you, Amayzing Graces, Karen May

I live in the grace period.

I know that our library gives you two days after your due date before they start charging a late fee. I know that there are about 30 miles left after the needle hits the “E” on the gas gauge. And, I know that the paddle board company gives you fifteen minutes to be late before they charge you for the next hour.

As we were heading back to the dock on a recent paddle boarding trip, my daughter was really upset that we weren’t going to make it back in time.  Continue reading

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