Ricochet

Love is like crystal…beautiful until its broke.


Broken_Heart

In the middle of the quiet night, I listen to the creatures as they share a “who is right” conversation. Hearing them squabble, reminds me of you and I. Whoever has the last word doesn’t matter, wrong or right. We fight about the littlest things…you buy the milk; I’ll buy the butter. Like ants crossing a lily pad and the frog has enough of them, he jumps off, for its all he can handle.

So here we are wasting away another day that God hath made, trying to get our last say. At the end of the day, a compromise will certainly be rendered. Back and forth, love, like a ping pong ball, appears to be who serves last – that’s what matters most. Frustrated as pointless accusations hurdle across the net, we speak our peace and words ricochet through our hearts.

Love is like crystal…beautiful until its broke. Worthless in the trash, we pick up the pieces of our fragile relationship, trying to make it last. Like closing the windows after a tornado has passed, only God knows the damage.

Bits and pieces of past history lingers in our own mystery. I wonder, why is life ricocheting from wall to wall? The hurts become deflated egos and common sense lies like broken crystal. “Why?”, is the only word…. not “sorry”, nor regrets. The walls stand tall, impervious to glass being at thrown at them.

Here where faith lies in the balance, fear becomes a common denominator. And where there is fear, there is no faith….do the math. You can’t fix broken crystal.

 


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Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Corinthians 13: 4-7)

It is better to live in a corner of the housetop than in a house shared with a quarrelsome wife. (Proverbs 21:9)

But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. (James 3:17)

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (Romans 3:23)

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Looking In The Mirror

….I have longed for contentment where God’s concerned


(R.I.P. Michael Jackson)


A cool breeze penetrates my soul as the warmth from above has grown cold. The summer’s heat has turned into fall as the rainy weekends set the stage for the upcoming holidays. I so love the extravagant colors! Things so green turn brightly bold in shades of brown, yellow and gold. But the shades of gray tell the story. Reflecting on my moonlit night, I sail my heart onto calm waters. Thanking God for the gift of life, I finally made it to my golden times.

The winds whirl from around the edge and gathering summer’s foliage becomes quite an obstacle. Raking up the flower beds, my little pansies are about to bloom.

Even in our darkest days, we all want flowers to warm our spirits.  Sunflower

Coming inside to escape the chill, a hot shower may thaw my weary soul. Shedding the layers, I catch a glimpse of something in the mirror. Taking a second look, it must have been my mind playing tricks on me. So a steamy resolute will resonate my body, cleansing my thoughts. My eyes closed, I ask only for forgiveness and my heart is cleansed.

Realizing this is only second best to a full blown baptismal in the Jordon River, I’m rejuvenated. God can use me for what’s next. Opening the door, a steamy mirror clearly sends me a message…

All of us, sometimes, wonder if our direction is correct.

A sense of relief has assured my intent. My life full circle, a man with many directions, had shunned religion as I followed my own path. Wronged so many, consciously speaking, I have longed for contentment where God’s concerned. And there on my mirror just one word – “Blessed”.

Looking in the Mirror


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And I will make them and the places round about my hill a blessing; and I will cause the shower to come down in his season; there shall be showers of blessing. (Ezekiel 34:26)

But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19)

Know therefore that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God, who keeps His covenant and His loving kindness to a thousandth generation with those who love Him and keep His commandments (Deuteronomy 7:9)

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)

I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. (Ezekiel 36: 25-27)

Engraved Hurts

Like soldiers on a battleground, our persistent thoughts are marching on….


We sit across the table from each other and the tension rises like ocean waves before a hurricane. Our hearts ache from the daily frustrations. Words fly like cannonballs across the bow. The night is lighting up from the fiery hurts and our broken souls is damforgiveness 2aging our spirits. There is not a “sorry” that can mend the fury; no kindness is coming from giving; no hugs healing the hardened hearts; just short little snippets that become too repetitive to hear. I’m asking for grace to bring some peace to the table. But when two hearts aren’t in sync, God has His work cut out for Himself. Our love is souring like month old milk.

Love, like spring pollen, carries off to a neighbor’s lawn; walls are retaining the temper and silence is becoming enemy number one. So my conscience knocks on heaven’s gates and I’ll pray for our Lord to hear my heart. But like statues in the wind, the prayers are standing guard of the present. Life, cruel at times, has no invitation. Joy, the ultimate restorer between two hearts, is waiting on the other side.

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I’m in awe watching the tears as they flow and sorrow can’t explain the reckoning. Blame is passing like vegetables at Thanksgiving. There is no rhyme or reason. Our Lord sits at the head of the table trying to join our hearts in prayer. Stubborn though, our minds are overruling the prayers. Like soldiers on a battleground, our persistent thoughts are marching on…. I’m carrying the flag trying to surrender but our guns are still drawn.

Morning arrives and a tranquility, like the dew from the night before, is falling over the engraved flowers. Hearts are listening to subconscious minds as we cease fire. Over early coffee, our guns are holstered. An anointing brings a smile as the sun breaks through the thunder. Love is being restored and the sun is warming little petals. God, the only true peacemaker, is reigning over the battlefields of our minds. We sit in peace and the quiet sermon is coming as the gentle breeze rings the wind chimes.

I’m asking myself, could this have been avoided? Unequivocally, yes, if God is first and past hurts are left by the headstones of our deceased memories. We’re limping away, now handicapped from the wounds encountered from the night before.

Mandrell

So, here we are off on our busy day….people to meet, bills to pay, and our Lord is holding down the fort. We are marching off, alone, to fight our own personal battles…

 

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EDITOR NOTES:  Did you ever hurt the person you loved?  Did you say unwanted things?  If you have hurt someone you loved, it is not easy to repair this mistake.  It is time to seek forgiveness.  You may have to go to great lengths to win over the trust once again.

Watch your words in a fit of temper and weigh the pros and cons of every word you utter. If you want to express your anger at an event, target the incident and not the person.

Be truly repentant…

 


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A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. (Proverbs 15:1)

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; … (1 Corinthians 13:13)

And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.   (1 Peter 5:10)

 


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Almighty Child

Children that perceive such miraculous perception ought to flatter themselves in Holy water. Parent abuse is common….

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The word spread and men came bearing gifts. Animals grazed out in the meadows…. we all know the story. A child was born by miraculous conception. There is no other miracle greater than a child that two parents have been blessed with from God. Ah, yes. But most of us have experienced the blessing of your child’s birth. Then our kids grow up and they have the misconception they can do no wrong …

Too many times, I find friends being scolded by their children. It’s as if the child inherited permission from their grandparents. I sat outside in a refreshing breeze last night and listened to how an adolescent can run their lives better than their parents. Though some have never had the pleasure of bearing a child, the Almighty Child can do no wrong. A legend in their own mind, they believe you won’t find fault with their lifestyle. They wander unto this world having more knowledge and skill than those twice their age.

I believe we have created a new class of people – not rich, nor poor – but the self- righteous. They are perfect but only in a mirror, maybe. I hear the sins of these children that proclaim their innocence. Oh, don’t you wish you could return to the righteousness of youth where you could be as perfect as the children are today??

Telling parents all their faults they have made, it’s as if when they achieve enough demerits they will disown their parents. Somebody needs to shake them and remind them that wisdom comes from failures. If parents were as perfect as Christ, there would be no need to reluctantly remind them how irrelevant they are. When someone passes away, the child waits for handouts!

I remember my dad always said, “Those who live in glass houses ought not pitch the first stone”. I believe he was smarter than me. Children that perceive such miraculous perception ought to flatter themselves in Holy water.

The Ten Commandments are written in stone and now you know why. Children, today, will pay for their raising opinions. It’s as if you haven’t witnessed that rodeo played out before. Oh the roulette wheel your children spin. They gamble their life and all you can do is pray for them.

I wonder how many kids ever took the time to understand the Bible? I pray… not for them but for the parents that have been so badly damaged by their children’s immaculate conception of the philosophical washing – not by holy water but by the storm drains of the world.

 


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And they shall say to the elders of his city, ‘This our son is stubborn and rebellious; he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton and a drunkard.’ Then all the men of the city shall stone him to death with stones. So you shall purge the evil from your midst, and all Israel shall hear, and fear. (Deuteronomy 21:20-21)

Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him. (Proverbs 13:24)

Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4)

Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you strike him with a rod, he will not die. If you strike him with the rod, you will save his soul from Sheol. (Proverbs 23:13-14)

Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you. (Exodus 20:12)


 

Editor’s Notes:  Verbal abuse towards parents or other family members by young people is more common than many people think. It is an attempt to control and have power over you or others in the home.  It can happen in families of any culture, religion or situation in life.

Abuse can be a sign of:

  • The children hasn’t learned to control or manage feelings, especially anger. They act out their feelings without using any self-control.
  • The child hasn’t learned to deal with the stresses of life, to solve problems or cooperate.
  • They don’t value or respect other people.
  • They see a parent, often the mother, as weak and powerless.
  • The children are affected by alcohol or drugs. Some drugs can trigger psychosis (being out of touch with the real world) and violence.
  • A young person might act aggressively if they have problems with their mental health.
  • They may be anxious and lash out because they start to think they can’t trust those around them.

Whatever the reason, it doesn’t mean you should put up with it. It is important to get professional help! Many parents find that acting early helps them feel like the parent again. When you do make changes, things seem to get harder before they get better, so make sure you have support. It is important to:

  • Believe in yourself – it isn’t your fault and it doesn’t mean you are a bad parent
  • Learn to remain calm and find ways to deal with stress. Go for walks, have coffee with a friend or do other things that relax you.
  • Build your confidence by patting yourself on the back for each small step you take
  • Talk with someone who can help. Your doctor is a good place to start.
  • Join a group with other parents who are dealing with this too.

almighty children

 

IQ 72

…we will find our way in a wavering world.


Squirming in my seat as a bored little boy, my teachers struggled to teach me. English, Math, Biology…. it didn’t matter for the text books all looked the same. Confused, like driving in fog, I found myself stuck at an intersection. You see, I tried hard to pay attention but my comprehension was minimal. Life was leaving me behind.

A football coach started to preach to me one day. “You’ll never amount to anything”, he said, “how can you with your lack of mentality?” A tear came as I cleared my throat. My shoulders hung low; I had no response. I knew not of God to stand with me as stones were thrown. Though demolished by insults hurled at me, my Lord was watching and giving me eternal strength. But I was too young and innocent to understand the beliefs instilled so I ran.

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Life was like a roller coaster. The climbs were challenging and the valleys were never ending but even as a small child with an IQ of 72, God had a purpose. I learned the greatest gift from God isn’t always the gift but “the giving”. As we walk through life, I propose you be ever mindful that even Christ, with all His many quests before Him, leaves a lot of life in question. It is God who holds the answers. Jesus, like a butler, only holds the door when heaven’s gates are opened. For there is no test score that defies aptitudes.

“For there the meek will inherit”, God’s promise to us all. Looking at the road I’ve traveled, doors opened and blessings flowed. I never saw a traumatic loss; blessings were disguised. But somehow life, with its twists and turns, gets sorted out as we grow older. They’re like the dawn – a new light comes and night is calmed. Channeled through life like running water, we will find our way in a wavering world.

 


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I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13)

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. (Romans 12:12)

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. (Joshua 1:9)

 

IQ72

Grace Estates

…if only I knew what I wish was possible as God calls from upon the hill


Sometimes life is truer than fiction. You finish reading an excerpt and while walking away, you wonder if it’s true. And then there are times when God puts things so squarely in your face you miss it! You absolutely can’t even see what He’s trying to do. The examples are too numerous.

As I drive every morning, the sun rises over the foot hills and my vision blurs. It’s a winding, little back road that not many use. It’s in disrepair with lots of curves. But there’s a place I pass every morning and afternoon and I dare not stop. A wrought iron gate is ajar; the invitation is so inviting but I’m not worthy to enter so I drive on with a mere glimpse. How I would love to live there!

Passing the gates, I break. I sense God’s calling but I, a mere pauper, could never fill the proprietor’s shoes. I might, though, be lucky enough to get the mail or take the garbage to the end of the hill but certainly not to own a mansion such as this.

Though I pass by and dream, reality is just a few miles away. But oh, how could I not dream of sharing my life with the one I love behind the gates called Grace Estates? Only God opens doors to let us peak at what’s in store. Though we gaze out into the wild yonder, held captive by reality, the presence of God is abundant.

Whisking through another week, so far I’ve heard God’s calling ten times. How I wish I could turn left and enter in the gates ajar! I dare to trust. My faith restrains my spirit; if only I knew what I wish was possible as God calls from upon the hill. I fear only my lack of faith while flying down the back roads, running late. I guess God’s going to have to wait; too many bills that I must pay. And I realize the metaphor – my windows are rolled up.

God, I pray your hands control my very existence – no time to stop and smell the roses. But someday I’ll stop and get out of my car. I’ll put my right hand on top of the open gate and walk up the hill of Grace Estates.

 

Grace Estates

 


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For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:11)

And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:29)

The reward for humility and fear of the Lord is riches and honor and life. (Proverbs 22:4)

The Rodeo Drama

……lessons that scorned the fragile heart


With my feet propped up high above the noise and confusion, I admire the sunset over the pristine waters. I see a couple holding hands with a little child swinging between their arms. The family dog runs into the ocean and runs back to his master, and then decides to shake off. Watching from the twentieth balcony, my Margarita relieves the anguish I left a thousand miles away. I wonder if my feeder still feeds my feathered friends at home.

Rodeo drama

My focus is altered from that rodeo drama I left or at least until I return. Fast forwarding, it’s sad to think I was lead down a path not blessed by God. So I found a place so far above that heaven was closer. I took the climb to find myself enjoying the beach, sunset and that which ails my aching arches.

Another day renders as it bids farewell. I watch the moon as it crests over the wandering seas. Cradling the stars, a peace is delivered especially for me. God has cursed the mundane. They hide in the pages of my mind by lessons that scorned the fragile heart. Though there is peace on the twentieth balcony, only God can communicate with me now. I stare at the stars and begin to start to count them. But the rodeo drama plays on like a recording in the back of my mind.

Miles of distance apart, I wonder if you knew the pain and suffering I went through? You stabbed me in my spirit and my life altered. They rushed me to a sanctuary and God saved my soul. The rodeo drama still plays on but without me. I can hear the scenes of act number five, from the twentieth balcony where it echoes in the halls below me.

Born once more, I’m slamming the last of the doors that remain open. I shut that chapter and turn the page. I realize now, God has saved the best for last. You were little less than a speed bump in my life.

Miracles only happen when you allow your life to be an open book. I have closed the gates on the rodeo drama I left miles away…. twenty floors below.


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I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naïve. (Romans 16:17-18)

If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless.   (James 1:26)

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.   (Ephesians 4:29)