Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Morning Coffee: Turn Your Telescope Around

Today is Cat in the Hat Stamp Day. This 33-cent Cat in the Hat U.S. postage stamp was issued May 26, 1999 as one of fifteen stamps of the "Celebrate the Century" series honoring the 1950's.

"I like nonsense; it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living. It's a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. Which is what I do, and that enables you to laugh at life's realities."   ~ Dr. Seuss

Pour another cup of coffee and then turn your telescope around.
Enjoy the day!


Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A Stern Choice

The spiritual life is a stern choice. It is not a consoling retreat from the difficulties of existence, but an invitation to enter fully into that difficult existence, and there apply the Charity of God, and bear the cost. 
~ Evelyn Underhill

I am finally beginning to have a better understanding of this promise. I’ve given mouth service to it for years; I have had the words of this comforting hymn framed and hung in my home. And I can sing-song through it with ease.

God has not promised skies always blue,
Flower strewn pathways all our lives through.
God has not promised sun without rain,
Joy without sorrow, peace without pain.

But God has promised strength for the
Day, rest from the labor, light for the way;
Grace for the trials, help from above,
Unfailing sympathy, undying love.

But this isn’t an easy promise or an easy way to live, as Evelyn Underhill tells us.  It is a stern choice.  However it is a real promise; one to count on. And I am finally beginning to know that.

Listen here.


Monday, May 24, 2010

Lessons from Matty of Lazy Bee Farm!

This morning I visited Matty's Lazy Bee Farm, reading her post of yesterday.  I found it encouraging so decided to share it here.

First Day Musings - Today's Four Lessons 

Enjoy this new week!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Morning Coffee

Since God offers to manage our affairs for us, let us once and for all hand them over to His infinite wisdom, in order to occupy ourselves only with Himself and what belongs to Him. ~ J. P. de Caussade

(Now if I could just pry my fingers off of my affairs...I can keep the coffee, just let go of my affairs!)


Sunday, May 16, 2010

Tozer - Mystery of the Holy Spirit

From A. W. Tozer’s sermon, The Abiding Elements of Pentecost:

“Dr. A. B. Simpson had an illustration, which I think was about as good as I ever heard. He said to be filled with the fullness of God was like a bottle in the ocean. You take the cork out of the bottle and sink it into the ocean; you got the bottle full of ocean, the bottle is in the ocean, the ocean is in the bottle, the ocean contains the bottle, the bottle contains a little bit of the ocean and so it was with the Christian. We are filled under the fullness of God, but of course, we cannot contain all of God because God contains us.”

I like that illustration.


The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews

  My extra copy of The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews will be going to my friend Patty - which is very appropriate because she spends her winters in the Gulf Shores area, where this book is set.  I am finding this story to be very interesting and I'm pretty sure Patty will, too.  Enjoy!!


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The Mystery of the Holy Spirit

My newly purchased A.W. Tozer book arrived from Amazon this past week: Tozer: Mystery of the Holy Spririt.

Personally I find Tozer’s writings to be inspirational, thought provoking and convicting. Rev. James L Synder wrote in his Introduction to this book:

To truly understand Tozer, one must focus on his devotional life. For him, correct doctrine was not enough. He said, “You can be straight as a gun barrel theologically and as empty as one spiritually.” When he preached and taught, he did not stress systematic theology; instead, he emphasized the importance of a personal relationship with God – a relationship so personal and so overpowering as to entirely captivate a person’s attention. He longed for what he called a ‘God-conscious soul’ – a heart aflame for God.

“You can discover , Tozer once instructed, more of the Holy Spirit in five minutes on your knees in adoring worship than five years at a seminary.”

This book, Mystery of the Holy Spirit, is a collection of Tozer’s sermons on the Holy Spririt – given more than half a century ago. I’m certain that Tozer will offer a more indepth look at the Holy Ghost than any I have received up to now. It will be a good study for me.


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews - Copy Available

I was introduced to by Matty on her blog Lazy Bee Farm. Receiving free books in exchange for a written review sounded like an interesting proposal. So I joined up and just received my fourth book to read and review. I selected The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews because I love historical fiction and this one sounded so interesting. From the cover:

“In the classic storytelling style of The Noticer and The Traveler’s Gift, New York Times best-selling author Andy Andrews now delivers an adventure set sharply against the warm waters and white sands of the Gulf of Mexico in WWII America.

Saddened and unable to abandon her resentment toward the Nzi war machine that took her husband’s life, the young and attractive Helen Mason is living a bitter, lonely existence. Betrayed and left for dead, German U-boat officer Lt. Josef Landermann washes ashore in a sleepy town along the northern gulf coast, looking to Helen for survival.

The Heart Mender is a story of life, loss, and reconciliation, reminding us of the power of forgiveness and the universal healing experience of letting go.”

I am anxious to get started reading this story. And if you think you’d like to read it, too, send me an email telling me so at Booksneeze (Thomas Nelson Publishers) has given me an extra copy to give away on my blog. As I really don’t have a ton of blog readers; nor is this something I’ll be doing regularely, I’m using a simple sysytem of gathing emails from those of you who might be interested in having a copy of this book. On Saturday, May 15th, I’ll drop them into a basket, stir them up and then have Jim draw one out. So if you want to be a part of this drawing, send me an email and let me know. (If you want to link this post to your own blog for your own readers, feel free - but it is not required for entry.)

I'll be reviewing this book here when I have finished it. 


Monday, May 10, 2010

Monday Morning Coffee

"All you need is love. But a little chocolate [and coffee] now and then doesn't hurt."  ~ Charles M. Schulz


Friday, May 7, 2010

Nor be Afraid!

"Grow old along with me! The best is yet to be, the last of life, for which the first was made. Our times are in his hand who saith, 'A whole I planned, youth shows but half; Trust God: See all, nor be afraid!'"
Robert Browning

Today, May 7, is the birthday of Robert Browning (1812). While the first part of this quote is one we see often, it's the last of this quote that is the best. Trust God: See all, nor be afraid!

Let's celebrate today and what is yet to be!  I'll put the coffee on!!


Thursday, May 6, 2010

Morning Thought

Prayer wonderfully clears the vision; steadies the nerves; defines duty; stiffens the purpose; sweetens and strengthens the spirit.
~ S. D. Gordon


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Morning Coffee

As I’ve written here many times before, I love the writings of A.W. Tozer. And currently I’m reading And He Dwelt Among UsTeachings from the Gospel of John. This morning I read this passage:

“Always remember that God is easy to get along with, and if your heart is right, He is not too concerned about the formula. God is kind and good and gracious, because there are some of us that are just too hard to get along with. If God were as hard to get along with as we are, there would be one perpetual quarrel between our souls and God. God has to be easy to live with, and if He knows you mean right, He will let you make all sorts of mistakes and will not care.”

Isn’t that encouraging? How patient and kind He must be to put up with someone like me. It would be good for me to remember that the next time my impatience wants to manifest itself in a very ungracious verbal barrage.   That might just be the time to pour another cup of coffee and chill out a bit.  To be easy to live with - just like God - is a great goal.


Monday, May 3, 2010

Plan B by Pete Wilson

Plan B by Pete Wilson
What do you do when God doesn’t show up the way you thought He would?

This isn’t a revolutionary question nor is this book a revolutionary answer to this question. But what this book is, is a wonderfully written guide to understanding just what it means biblically and spiritually to be in a Plan B.

Through the use of beautifully told, yet carefully examined Bible stories, Wilson helps us see how even the most heartbreaking or devasting events (our Plan Bs) can be used by God to bring about a deep transformation in our lives. This isn’t a rose-colored-glasses look at our Plan Bs; no, Wilson repeatedly reminds us that there are no easy answers or explanations to our problems. But he does clearly lay out the promises that God makes available to us if we chose to stay in him during the inevitable dark times. And it is these promises – which Wilson supports with ample biblical references - that will bring about spiritual transformation.

Wilson writes, “There is an undeniable relationship between crisis and hope. Between waiting hopefully and being transformed. Between Plan B and the glory of God.”

This book is an excellent place to begin to get hold of a deeper understanding of what that means. I, without any reservation, give this book five solid gold stars! It will be one I go back to again and again.


Sunday, May 2, 2010

Spiritual Transformation

Spiritual transformation doesn’t take place on Sunday when we get what we want. It takes place on Saturday while we’re waiting. It’s what is forged while we’re waiting, hoping, trusting, [and working] even though we have yet to receive that for which we long. 
~Pete Wilson

Or as Sue Monk Kidd (When the Heart Waits) put it:

Transformations come only as we go the long way round, only as we’re willing to walk a different, longer, more arduous, more inward, more prayerful route. When you wait, you’re deliberately choosing to take the long way, to go eight blocks instead of four, trusting that there’s a transforming discovery lying pooled along the way.

When Jim and I were working hard to “transform” a bankrupt company, I hung a framed farmfield print (cut from a calendar), above my desk. Beneath the picture it said:

There is no royal road to anything…
That which grows fast, withers as rapidly.
That which grows slowly endures.
   Josiah Gilbert Holland

This was the image I hung on to as we worked through the trials of our business life. Now I’m learning to apply it to my personal life as well. I’m trying to remember that Saturdays are needed if I want to fully experience Sunday.  That which grows slowly endures.


Saturday, May 1, 2010

Garage Sale Finds

I love garage sales; there is just so much interesting stuff to be found.  I'm having to be selective in the size of my teasures these days but I still enjoy finding something from the past.  This was my purchase of Thursday - a package of 6 books of Yellowstone Park matches - still wrapped in cellophane.  When do you think they stopped selling matches in our National Parks.  That would be interesting to know.