January 26, 2012

Without Fail

Here's one thing I love:

The absolute.
That which is stable, unvarying, fixed.


Because fixed and faithful and sturdy is exactly what I am NOT and exactly what this world fails to deliver as well.

It was one of the things that God used to make me His: inimitable, absolute truth.  Something, FINALLY, to really trust in and stand on.  A rock my wandering wave-self could crash and be broken on.  Relief from the paralyzing, painted hoax of myself and the world around me.

So for those of us who crave what is certain, God gives us this simple little statement from 1 Corinthians:

Love never fails.

That word "fails", in greek, means "to fall powerless, to fall to the ground, to be without effect."  The definition gives the picture of a withering flower.

I never took a physics class so forgive me for an oversimplification, but the way I understand "energy" in this universe, is that it "never dies."  It just takes on new forms.  The sun feeds the grass, the grass feeds the cow, the cow feeds man, when man dies, he feeds the ground i.e. the grass and it keeps going.

This is a perfect metaphor for love and it NEEDS to encourage us.
And this is how:

Your relative that you have a hard time with who treats you awfully.
The checker at the store who's always in a bad mood.
A rebellious child making destructive decisions.
Your coworkers who think you're crazy for being a Christian.
The unstable ground of any relationship.

They are not above this truth.  They do not have more power than the way God set up his universe.  You cannot stop energy and you cannot stop God's agape love.  It may FEEL like people around you don't listen and don't care and don't respond to the love you give... but keep giving it.  Keep it up defiantly.  "Do not be overcome by evil, " writes Paul the apostle, "but overcome evil with good" (Romans 12:21).

No, the effect of love may not be seen right now.  Sometimes it can be seen immediately, but most of the time love takes years to change us.  God was not intimidated by the years it would take for us to come to Him and we need to have that same patience for others.

Don't ever think you're wasting your life when God has moved His love out and through you.  Because even if that love seems like it's not affecting the crushed and crumbling hearts around you, it will at least be changing yours.  God never works on just one level.

Martin Luther wrote as part of his 95 theses:

"by works of love, love grows and a man becomes a better man."

So take heart, little pilgrim.  You will not- will NOT- fail if love flows out from you. 

You may not see the results you desire, but you will know more of your God's heart than when you started and you will be living a life based on fact that is stronger and older than this universe we live in... a most refreshing state, indeed, no matter what transpires around us.

January 25, 2012

epic snow

well, i survived my first washington snow storm.  gotta say, it was pretty breathtaking... and near the end, annoying :)

my favorite part was watching the flakes fall: HUGE flakes- like some one was in the cloud pulling apart cotton balls and letting them ride the soft wind currents all the way down. 

[seriously... sun or snow, my husband is just good-lookin' :)]

my portly cat and i did start to get a little cabin-fevery... he usually doesnt sit and look out the window, but the last day we were cooped he sat like this for hours... longing, probably, for snowless ground.  i drew him over my bible study notes with a ball point pen, so forgive the choppiness.  drawing from real life is always a little funny :)

January 21, 2012

how to be invincible, part 3

don't let anything make you anxious.
instead, pray.
Christ is your only need.

anytime you DONT feel invincible, remember that when you are in Him, you DO have all you need.

this is a new linocut print i made for the new year.  i made it mostly for my own sake from a post it note i had written to myself after reading philippians 4.

i'll have these up in the shop pretty soon if you want one on good paper with fancy archival ink.


if you want a free print on regular paper with water based ink (pictured) then just let me know by convo-ing me on etsy and i'll send one out to you :)  it's a small image: 3" by 4".

let's hear it for our amazing, invincible God who IS all we are not!

January 16, 2012

how to be unstoppable, part 2

"Like anybody, I would like to live a long life.  Longevity has it's place.  But I'm not concerned about that now.  I just want to do God's will.  And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain.  And I've looked over and I've seen the promised land... So I'm happy tonite.  I'm not worried about anything.  I'm not fearing any man."

--"I've Been to the Mountaintop" speech, April 3, 1968 (the day before his assassination)

Happy Birthday to an inspiring man.

January 9, 2012

how to be unstoppable, part 1

from BLB-

God is God. I dethrone Him in my heart if I demand that He act in ways that satisfy my idea of justice. It is the same spirit that taunted, “If Thou be the Son of God, come down from the Cross.” There is unbelief, there is even rebellion, in the attitude that says, “God has no right to do this to fine men unless…”
Those men had long since given themselves without reservation to do the will of God…
For us widows the question as to why the men who had trusted God to be both shield and defender should be allowed to be speared to death was not one that could be smoothly or finally answered in 1956, nor yet silenced in 1996. God did not answer Job’s questions either. Job was living in a mystery—the mystery of the sovereign purpose of God—and the questions that rose out of the depths of that mystery were answered only by a deeper mystery, that of God Himself.
—Elisabeth Elliot, Through Gates of Splendor (Tyndale, 1981)

January 4, 2012

good words for the new year

"don't let anything make you anxious.  instead, pray.  Christ is your only need."
(my paraphrase of certain parts of philippians 4 :)