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Dedication…

Several mornings ago I noticed two crows perched out on our trailer.  They reminded us of the birds on the Windex commercial!  The sat and didn’t move for a very long time.

IMG_2466Not long after that, I noticed a lone crow sitting in the middle of the yard.  He didn’t move much and when I walked out into the yard he only fluttered and hopped away from me.

IMG_2467The Windex Birds began squawking at me.  I left for work hoping that they would all be gone when I returned home.  These black winged creatures are very noisy at very early hours of the morning.

That evening I went out to water the plants and noticed my little friend was still hanging around, now in a different part of the yard.  I simply walked past him and the Windex Birds swooped my head!  Can you say Alfred Hitchcock?  I began to put two and two together.  The lone crow is wounded in some way and can’t fly.  The Windex Birds are his body guards.  As long as he is here, they will also.  Fabulous!  Every so often they call in all of their friends and the trees fill with loud crows squawking!

Now fast forward to today.  I arrive home from work and our little friend is sitting beneath a fir tree near my car.  The Windex Birds are not as present as they have been.  My little friend is not moving much and has labored breathing.  I think he is not long for this world.  Our neighborhood is filled with cats and I’m very surprised that he has not yet been dinner for one of them.  I found myself praying for him tonight and asking God to take him quickly and not let him suffer.  I know… I’m praying for the crows that keep me awake at night!  He seems so helpless and alone.

IMG_2493 IMG_2499 IMG_2497I’ve learned this week that crows are very smart birds and extremely devoted.  As long as my little bird is around, the Windex Birds will be as well.  They have his back. The have not left. Dedication.

It reminds me of the Marine that never left the side of the young man killed in May.  He was with him 24/7 until he was home and delivered to his family.  And after that, he stayed with the family to walk them through the final details.  Dedication.

It also reminds me of Jesus.  He is with me always.  When I am weak and wounded, he watches and waits with me.  When I am alone and isolate myself, He is with me in my loneliness.  When the enemy tries to attack me,Jesus swoops in to protect me.  He will never leave me.  Dedication.  Reminds me of the crows.

As I said earlier, I think my little friend is not long for this world.  The Windex Birds sense it as well.  They are less aggressive and their presence is not as noticeable.  Too bad my little friend does not have the gift of eternity that I have.  He will leave this world and it’s done.  Thankfully that is not the case for you and me!  We move on to glorious eternity!  And Jesus will continue to watch over us.  Forever dedicated.

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Grace · Hope · Prayers · Seasons

Changing Seasons…

The temperature and the leaves have fallen.  The trees are bare.  The ground is frozen and covered with the last of the leaves.  Most of them are not even ours.  They have blown from across the way… from the oak trees.  Today is the day to get the last of them up and gone.  The end of the autumn season.

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With a season change comes the time to put away things that you no longer need.  Rakes, flower pots, wheel barrows. All tucked away for the winter.  Some things you have to throw away, for they are not reusable when spring comes.  The two flower pots on my patio that have bloomed beautifully all fall, are now frozen in time.  They still look alive and well, but if you touch them they are brittle.  It’s tough to have to throw them away for they have been a source of life on my patio for many months.  IMG_6233

This change of season should feel a bit like cleaning out… simplifying.  There should be a feeling of excitement for winter and all that it will bring.  Clean yard, neatly stacked wood for the winter fires, snow shovels out, ice scrapers by the back door, scarves and mittens down out of the closet, hot chocolate ready to be made.

I wish it were that easy.  This season change feels more challenging than others have been in the past.  Life has gotten very complicated with all of the things we battle day in and day out – relationships, finances, responsibilities, memories of things lost and hopes for things to come.

Just when I think it’s more than I can handle, God steps in. Like the first evening of November when I walked outside into a glorious sunset.  All the worry that was heavy on my heart washed away for a moment as He revealed that it’s not about me… He’s with me in this change of seasons.

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Of course, I took all the worry back and continued on, waking early in the morning with anxiety and fear.  Wishing, hoping, wondering.  Then He steps in again and lands a letter in my mailbox from a dear friend struggling with breast cancer.  Her words were that of encouragement and love.  Once again, God reminded me of His grace and goodness.  My sweet friend’s words encouraged me to find the blessings throughout the day… to take my mind off the things that are weighing me down.

I’ve let myself get bogged down by all of the leaves falling on me at once.  What I need to do is take one leaf at a time!  Find the blessing and beauty, and do what needs to be done in each moment, covered in His grace and new mercies every day.  The seasons change whether I’m ready or not.

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How are you embracing the season change in your life?  Be encouraged and open to all that the new season will bring.

“For I know the plans I have for you, ” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.  I will be found by you” declares the Lord.    Jeremiah 29:11-13 (NIV)

Grace · Healing · Hope · life happens... · Prayers

Believe… Even When It’s Difficult

What do you do when life does not go the way you expect it to?  When it throws you a curve ball so curvy that you can’t even begin to catch it?  When it was thrown so hard it knocks you off balance?

You spin, you whirl, you wobble, you fall.  You fall down hard.  So hard that for a time you can’t even think straight.  Blindsided?  Or were you?  Did you see it coming and just put your head in the sand day after day?

Now what?  Where do you go from here?

Jesus… sweet Jesus.  Hang on tight.  Hold his hand.  Press in and be thankful even when you don’t think you can.

“He does not give you more than you can handle.”  Really?  That overused line does not bring comfort.  Oh, how it’s spoken recklessly to people in crisis.

Stop!  Breathe.  Draw close to him and settle in.  Pray… hope… trust… pray… believe.

Believe that broken things can be restored.
Believe that disappointment is not forever.
Believe that after every storm dissipates
there is clarity and light.
Believe that even if love and kindness
doesn’t change them,
it will change you.

                                                                                                                           (The Backroads Girl)


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