Thursday, June 28, 2012
We travel through life from one day to the next sometimes without even being aware of what goes on around us. Every time I get caught in the headlights on the "road of life" and see something really amazing, it catches me by surprise. One of the custodians at the school where I work showed me an amazing picture of his granddaughter's spine which had recently been operated on. The before and after were nothing short of miraculous. The fact that within a week she will be out of the hospital and walking around boggles my mind. I received a photo on my phone of the latest addition to our family, a little girl so small but delicately formed, it takes your breath away. The bright pink of the hydrangea outside of the walkway into the school is an unheard of shade that arrests your eye no matter what else may be on your mind. The tiny little bunny nibbling clover on the front lawn, shivering and hoping the huge giant of a person (me) won't notice them as they cower among the blossoms. The fact that I can sit here and type these words and they will be out on the Internet in just a few short moments. Oh, Lord, how marvelous are they works! I have an alarm set on my phone to remind me every day to pray at a certain time. My prayer partner and I have tried to keep this practice as I am notorious for neglecting my prayer life unless prompted regularly. And today when it went off, I remembered to thank God for life, for love of family and friends and for the beautiful world we inhabit. What can you thank God for today? What have you witnessed recently that has reminded you that God is with us? Think on that, just for a few moments. God's blessings abound.
Friday, June 8, 2012
I work in a high school. And there are certain things that happen every year that are pretty universal in all high schools. This weekend, the prom is what is on all the kids' minds. Whether they are attending or not. I hear them in the hallways, "what are you wearing? what will you do with your hair?" They talk excitedly and with more animation than normal (and that's saying something, they are teenagers after all!). I looked at the daily devotional reading from Corinthians today and thought about clothes and what they mean, how we think about them. But I also thought of a bunch of other things related to wearing garments. For instance, when I was growing up, there was a saying, "the clothes make the man." It had something to do with dressing up nice and thereby being nice. Like a good fitting suit, you would be good inside and out. Of course, we know that this statement isn't really true. But I remember it was imparted as wisdom when I was a kid. My mother made it a point to dress up to go to church. It was unheard of going in your "play clothes". I carried this tradition on with my children and they grumbled about it week after week, in probably the same whiny tones I used. People today don't feel they have to dress up to go to church. "God doesn't care what I look like on the outside" is what I hear most often. And the God I have come to know and love probably doesn't care, but I still wear nice clothes to church on Sunday anyway. I don't dress up very often for anything these days so Sundays feel special when I make the effort. A guy I knew became a Mormon and he kept his "grave clothes" with him at all times. When he died suddenly of a heart attack, people felt weird about the fact that the white robe he had in his closet was all ready for him to wear. I don't know, I think it's very forward thinking to be ready for anything at any time. I'm not sure I have to wear something special mind you, but I get the idea. But all this talk about physically wearing clothes is not the point of the reading today (2 Corinthians 5:1-5). I think it has more to do with the putting on of the right attitude. Looking forward to the heavenly home we have instead of decking ourselves out in our finest suits and jewels. There is a yearning sometimes I feel when I think about being in the company of heaven, knowing that because God loves me, it won't matter whether my robes are white or even if I color my hair. What matters is that God will see the real me (warts and all!). God will welcome me because I am an heir, a daughter. I get tired trying to be something I'm not here on earth. Trying hard to fit in, or be like others. And there are wearying days when that time can't come fast enough. Now I'm not looking to do myself in, but the striving I feel some days makes me wish that heaven were here instead of in the future. So I guess I will continue to dress up in my "Sunday best" Sunday mornings. Not because I want to impress anybody, least of all God. But because I like to do it. I hope to see you there in your Sunday Smiles as well. I'll be wearing mine right along side of you, clothed in the God who loves us. I don't think I could buy a better outfit!