Wednesday, August 18, 2010

His Hand Brushed Her Heart - Theme Thursday

A life that screams glory and embraces wisdom of those around her, confused as hands are everywhere but One holds her tight.  What some would call a flaw or a defect, One would call good and perfect.  Though fallen is this world, Glory still abounds!

It was a normal evening for the doctor, a glass of wine with dinner, family around talking of the first days of school that had come much faster than desired.  His wife had a glimmer in her eyes, a radiance in her face, and a look that he had seen before, it was to be a good night!

Upon finishing the meal, the family cleaned together, laughed as each dish was washed, rinsed, dried and put away.  Even when one slipped and shattered there was no anger or disappointment, simply a closeness that had felt slightly distant for a while.

The park called their name that evening, though the air was thick with moisture.  As they strolled down the sidewalk hand in hand exchanging joyful glances the children danced and laughed around them, as if this peace had radiated to them as well.

Upon their return it was baths, books and hugs in preparation for bedtime.  Each child tucked in with a kiss and a hope for the day that would follow.  Then, entering his bedroom, candles flickered on the soft skin of his long love.

The evening was perfect, followed by a deep sleep he had not felt in what seemed to be ages.  No distractions or disruptions, just a night of rest in preparation for the morning.

At 5:30 his alarm went off, but he had woken moments before so as not to be startled by the piercing sound.  Arising with a smile he showered and drank his coffee, black as usual, though the aroma seemed to overwhelm him and the taste flowed like it was roasted and brewed just for his palette.  He checked the cabinet, Folgers as usual.

He arrived at the hospital and prepped for an early infant surgery.  He flowed like a skilled artist steady and smooth.  His eyes focused, mind whirring 7 steps ahead of where he was but completely in the moment.  A slight snag, he reached his giant nimble finger into her chest and upon its return his hand brushed gently against her heart.  This made him pause, if only for a moment, to grasp the depth of where he was.

It was as if everything leading to this had been orchestrated, guided for him to be perfect in that moment.  As the surgery finished a nurse congratulated the doctor on another success but there was a hesitation in him, as if this one wasn't his.  He smiled behind his blue mask, remembering his slight brush and walked out to continue this day.

This is a slightly different kind of write for me but this is what was on my mind.  Some great friends of mine are currently leaning on grace through this with their daughter, her name is Gracie.  I thought of the doctor being fresh and focused as so many were praying for her surgery.  To God be the Glory.  Their story can be followed here.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Longing to Listen

On his knees, pleading for direction and peace as he had done religiously for the past 3 weeks, Michael felt as if his heart would explode.  Overwhelmed with anticipation for the future, and regret from the past, he tried to follow the words that consistently flowed from his pastor and church about how to live. This is what the Creator was after, what mattered was obedience.

The past few months had been different for him, raging towards a relationship he had neglected for most of his life at whatever cost.  He had cut back on hours at the store, up early each morning and to bed late trying to read and understand the textbook to life that had been presented to him.  Minutes and hours were put into this pursuit that left him still wanting for something.

Many times he would sit, longing for silence in his head to be able to hear the gentle whisper, the soft breeze of guidance.  But there had been no whisper, no breeze for his face.  On this morning of searching, Michael had been betrayed by his thoughts, "What if I was wrong, what if this is stupid!  What a waste of time!"  He shook his head free of these thoughts and pressed on, painful as it was.

Upon rising from his place of prayer to fight through another day at work Michael stood at the mirror and the thoughts of a wasted life continued to pierce.  He grabbed his bag and began his walk through the house.  He first past his son playing quietly in his room, gave him a glance, called that he loved him and continued on the trek through the house.

Next the bathroom, covered in water and hair . . . "Why doesn't she clean this up some time during the day" he thought.  Through the kitchen  where his wife stood making breakfast for children and washing dishes to his escape door.  "See you tonight" was all he could muster as he walked out the door, mind still on the reason for his God's silence. 

"Why, God, would you put me here to simply not to speak to me." 

I Peter 3:7  Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered. (ESV)

Community is critical in developing a relationship with Christ, and marriage is a picture of how He loves us. 

Like Christ loves the church

Making the extraordinary seem normal.


Friday, August 13, 2010

Too Long - 55

I long for the sound of your voice undistorted by technology and distance.

I yearn for the touch of your skin, fingers, hands, arms and the rest.

I need for the kiss of your lips grabbing my soul and pulling it close.

A week is too long, but so is a day and an hour.

This was for my wife who has been gone for a week but now returns to my arms where she belongs!

What can you say in 55 words? Give it a try or just read more, go see g-man.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

"And His Hand Fell from My Palm" - Theme Thursday

He had reached out to me, desiring to place his trials, his conquests, and his defeats in the palm of my hand and I stood there speechless.  I wanted to devour the insight, to clothe myself with the wisdom and experience resonating from his eyes.  He needed the comfort of words both spilling from him and piercing towards me.

But I needed the solace of apathy.

Instantaneously a thousand year war raged in my head with horns and guns drowning the plea to accept the gift he was trying to give.  I cracked my usual self-indulgent smile, cocked my head back and to the side and looked at him with half squinted eyes hoping he would hear my wordless message that I don't need what he has.

This arrogance was quickly shattered as the persistence of his limb reached towards me and the raspy, high pitched voice continued to break my desired silence.  He was battle torn over a few short years of complete disaster of which I could not fathom the impact.  His face was sheet white, save the reddish brown scar which spanned from his left temple to the center of his head and then back down.

The battle he had faced was coming to a slow end.  A fight with knives, white, sterile rooms, and pain.  This enemy had stolen his strength, his freedom, sometimes his sanity, and his hair.This enemy had stolen his life but he wouldn't say that.

He would say it gave him deep, true love with people and far more with Glory to desecrate in a futile attempt to explain with mere words.

There was no regret in his reddish eyes from tears and pain of what he would miss, what he would not experience.  His first car, his first summit of a mountain, his only walk down an isle to a woman resembling in character his mother.  These were after thoughts in the strive for Glory this twelve year old man knew was his.

In the end, I opened the palm of my hand and took his, hoping that crumbs would fall from the wisdom on his table that I might greedily consume.  I listened and laughed until he finished explaining love through disease.  He looked at me, smiled weakly, and with all the strength he could muster, winked.  He then breathed out.

And his hand fell from my palm.

This is a post for Theme Thursday with the topic of  "Palm."

This is a fictional tale for me but I think of many friends as I write it with a heavy heart.  Thank you for strength and wisdom for Glory. 


Wednesday, August 11, 2010


There was a recent weekend that was draining in all kinds of ways.  Certainly physically - 22 hours of driving in 49 hours, 8 hours of sleep in 60 hours.  Mentally - while driving I was usually thinking, this gets me in trouble quite often though!  Spiritually - I was a part of something the Holy Spirit had been brewing for 32 years, pushing over the past 2 years, and culminating with this incredible weekend.  It was beautiful in so many ways.

All that too say, I messed up, and none of that is an excuse.

There was someone who needed me and while physically I was there, mentally I was only half there and; spiritually I was gone . . . far away in the dreamland the rest of my being should have been in.  My wife needed a gentle touch, soft encouraging words, and servant leadership.  The ball that is so often spoke of . . . I dropped it.

Here's the thing, I was thinking about that today - That is not how Christ loved the church.  I tuned out because of fatigue, He was more focused on me while beyond exhaustion, I'm not sure that it evens describes the point He must have been at - and then He was taken, beaten, nailed, and died.

This how He loved the church, how He loves me.

There is no excuse for me, I am here to love her and serve her perfectly because that is my example.  I obviously won't always but my repentance to her and Christ draw me closer to both, and that brings Him glory.

Men, there is nothing about this that is about us, simply nothing.  Honestly, it sorta sucks but the minute I think of myself first, in whatever minuscule means, above Kristy, Christ, and His Word I become an idolater.  The ultimate truth is as men we are highest on the totem pole as leaders and lowest as our desires go.  I believe that women thrive when they are led well, and I let that ball roll on the crooked floor of my home.

So this is my public, heartfelt apology to my wife and God and my call to men to fight for this because it is not easy but it should be normal for those of us who claim to follow Christ, through His strength and power.

Make the extraordinary seem normal.

~Ordinary Warrior~

Friday, August 6, 2010

55 - Grasping for Dreams

I wake with memories close enough to graze with my fingertips reaching for the depth of what lies within.

Bringing down hints of a story that seemed so vivid as I fought to stay in and get away.

A different adventure, fantasy, or fear that escapes me in day but lives on in my dreams.

What can you say in 55 words? Give it a try or just read more, go see g-man.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Brown Equals - Theme Thursday

Summer has ended, marked by the return to the place learning and friends.  But Brown has made this day different than years past, Brown has believed in equality yet brought dissension.  Brown has fought for what is right and created what is difficult.

The usually welcoming over-sized pane of glass surrounding the entrance to this training ground of the youth was frightfully grim.  Stone faced uniforms are scattered throughout attempting to make safe what Brown has rightly deemed necessary and important yet a tension thick as water hangs in the air.

It starts with noise from there, piercing and loud, confirming the fears and tearing the hopes.  Some run away with horror in their face while others race towards, hate and anger burning but not truly knowing why.  Fists and feet fly landing on opposite colors followed by a sudden loud crash that brings everything to a halt.

The crowd stands breathless as if realizing the futility of their actions.  This moment is frozen in time as pools of red unite on the pavement below where the welcoming pane had stood only seconds before.  This first day of return was the first day of difference.

Civility and union would prevail, and rightly so, but the beginning of what Brown won on both sides created a war that had already been fought.  Many more changes would have to be made and many more battles, fought, but truth in equality has roots to the beginning.

This is based on Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka in 1954, a difficult but correct decision that was necessary but hard.  The story is a culmination of accounts from my mother and others remembering the first day of school after the decision.  I always think of the scene in Forest Gump and it makes me smile!

This is a Theme Thursday post with the theme of Brown.  Come and play!

Monday, August 2, 2010

I met a man . . .

I met a man recently who exudes Godly, it seemed to spill from him like a waterfall.  A man who is willing to hand over everything that he has built over the past 30 plus years in order that God be more glorified.

Perhaps this is a false premise, an incorrect line of thought.  This man seems to realize that its not his, that he didn't build it.  He just worked where he was asked to work and this was the result.  If I work for a builder who lets me build a house, do I own that house?  Is it mine because I was allowed to be part of the creation or does it still belong to the creator?

I saw in this relinquishing of leadership as a step towards effectiveness, a step towards residing in the gifts that are given.  This is rare.  On the contrary, most try to leverage gifts in order to gain position.

This man said something that really drove with me.  His phrase:  "If God is the head of the church then what is happening here is normal!"

I believe that.  I believe it deep into my soul.  If Christ is the head, whether it be church or my life, there are certain things that should be normal.  We have to battle for these things, for the truth of God to overwhelm us and overtake us in ways that seem extraordinary because He is leading.

We have to fight to make the extraordinary seem normal.

Ordinary Warrior.